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'Light' Foods Might Have More Than You Want

By Stephen Carter-Novotni · December 12th, 2007 · The Road to Wellness
You have to read food labels really carefully to make sure you're not getting hoodwinked.

The Nutrition Facts labels on the B-side of your food packaging are deceptively simple. For instance, I was surprised to learn that the 20-ounce bottle of Faygo on my desk is supposed to serve 2.5 people. When was the last time you shared a bottle of pop with someone else?

Products that claim to be "light" might have one-third the calories or half the fat of the original product, but that's just one accepted use of the term. "Light" can also refer to the taste, which often doesn't change the nutritional values at all. Look closely at the labels on both the original and the light version of the food and see for yourself if there's a difference.

If a product has less than half a gram of trans fat per serving, it can still be labeled "trans fat free." Look at the ingredients list for the word "hydrogenated." If it's there, there's trans fat in the food.

Reading between the lines on product labels helps you stay healthy in spite of corporate duplicity.

This Week in Wellness
´ Vineyard Central Church hosts a screening of Heima, an independent film of the melodic, post-rock band Sigur Ros' tour of Iceland. The band plays for the animals and trees (and hardly any people) in a mystical, interior journey. 8 p.m. Dec. 14 at Vineyard Central Church, 1757 Mills Ave., Norwood. 513-396-7202. Free.

´ See the Red Planet at Marsapalooza at the historic Cincinnati Observatory. 8-11 p.m. Dec. 14, 15, 21 and 22 at 3489 Observatory Place, Hyde Park. 513-321-5186. $5.

´ Connect with other socially conscious vegans at Cincinnati EarthSave's annual potluck holiday party. Guests are asked to bring a vegan dish, cup, plate and utensils. 4:30 p.m. Dec. 16, 3416 Clifton Ave., Clifton. 513-929-2500. Free.

´ Holistic health practitioner Victoria Smith hosts a discussion on heavy metals and environmental toxins at 7 p.m. Dec. 19 at 284 Main St., Florence. 859-801-1730. $3.

CONTACT STEPHEN CARTER-NOVOTNI: snovotni@citybeat.com. Send information about your mind, body and spirit events.



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