There are a lot of characteristics to look for when recognizing highly processed food items.

So, I want to tell you my best tip on how to do it quickly without being a nutritionist or researching food for hours.

But first, I can’t tell you how often I am told the foods people feed their kids. Without me bringing up my work, the foods my kids eat, or discussing health, people seem to want to tell me the foods they give their kids to eat.

Obviously, it’s the ones who know what I do that start the conversation, and it makes me laugh, because I don’t go around wondering what people eat.

It almost feels like confession or justification time for them. I just sit and listen, because I am not one to tell people how to feed themselves or their kids (unless they’re ready to learn it!).

Anyway, what I’ve learned through listening, is how often parents assume certain foods are healthy, when it’s actually far from healthy. However, I understand where they are coming from because that used to be me, and we were never REALLY taught which foods are good for us! Knowledge of these principles gives us the power to make smarter food choices.

So, let’s begin by learning this one simple way toward recognizing highly processed food…

Here it is…

If there are more than 8 ingredients in the “Ingredients:” list (located under Nutrition label), then it is most likely highly processed!

That’s right! Stop looking at the health claims on the front, stop checking to see if it’s organic or gluten-free to decide it’s healthy, stop counting calories, just check the ingredient’s label! It’s your new best friend.

I’d like to add a bonus tip, and that’s to remember the BEST foods for you don’t have an ingredient’s label.

So simple!

Sometimes we make things all too complicated (or perhaps the food industry leads the confusion), when it’s really not meant to be!

Because so much of the food in our grocery store is highly processed, it’s important to understand how sugar is being added to 90% of these processed foods!!! Sugar is cheap, addicting, and tasty…more here, more there. And most of them are hidden sugars…meaning, you have to become a health nerd these days to eat anything but celery and apples.

If you have a friend who is looking to make a lifestyle change in the way they eat, send them my way by sharing this blog post.

Comment below what kinds of changes you’d like to see happen in the near future with the way you eat.

I love hearing from you!

-Laura

 

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