Reading Food Labels

Reading Food Labels

How To Use Food Labels To Shop


Stock Up with Fresh Fruit & Vegetables

When you go shopping, your first stop should be at the colourful ailse that is stocked with wonderful seasonal fruits and vegetables.

In this produce section, choose a wide variety of fresh fruit and vegetables – these are naturally low in fat, sodium and rich in cholesterol lowering fibre. You can also choose frozen fruits and vegetables to have as a stand-by when there are times that you simply need something quick.   If you buy ‘simple’ frozen vegetables without any sauces, they can be better choices than cans because they eliminate salt and that’s a must to control blood pressure and manage heart disease. When purchasing canned goods choose brands with no-added salt.

Following a Macrobiotic lifestyle means avoiding dairy food to limit the amount of saturated fat, that’s the fat that comes from animals and hardens our organs. When choosing oils always look for oils without unsaturated fats in them and buy organic and cold pressed. Be very careful to avoid trans fats, check the labels if it says partially hydrogenated or hydrogenated it contains trans fats. Trans fats can be found naturally at low levels in some foods, such as those from animals, including meat and dairy products.

Artificial Trans fats can be formed when oil goes through a process called hydrogenation, which hardens the oil. This type of fat, known as hydrogenated fat, can be used for frying or as an ingredient in processed foods. Much smaller amounts of artificial trans fats can also be made when oils are refined to make them fit to eat. Artificial Trans fats can be found in some processed foods such as biscuits and cakes where they are sometimes used to help give products a longer shelf life.  Please also be aware of using products with Palm Oil.  The industry is linked to major issues such as deforestation, habitat degradation, climate change, animal cruelty and indigenous rights abuses in the countries where it is produced, as the land and forests must be cleared for the development of the oil palm plantations.

Focus on plant based protein like all sorts of beans and lentils, tofu, tempeh, seitan. These foods are fantastic sources of soluble fibre, not only to keep your digestive tract working well but also to combat cholesterol!

Beans with MarleneThe colourful bins with an array of wholegrains such as short grain brown rice, wild rice, millet, quinoa, in golden and in red, buckwheat, and so many more are the mainstay of my diet. They provide me with long lasting energy every day and don’t mess with my blood sugar, so make sure to stock up on these amazing grains.

For breakfast use wholegrain porridge or oatmeal which are excellent choices but if you are a cereal lover look for ones that have wholegrain and fibre with no sugar or make your own. When you start to read labels you will be surprised at what is actually in all those beautifully packaged ‘healthy’ breakfast cereals. There is only one brand of cornflakes that we can find that is sweetened with barley malt. Incredible eh!

There are many delicious breakfast recipe ideas on my you tube channel (link below) and in my book ‘Macrobiotics for all Seasons’ available world wide on amazon.

In good health



  1. I would never buy a boxed cereal again from the supermarket – as you say Marlene – most have so much added to them that I am puzzled where the word ‘healthy’ fits in!

    Your step by step recipe on Youtube for home made granola (which is scrummy by the way) proves you dont need those additives to get taste.

    Keep up the great advice – its my daily fix 😉

    T. xx

    • Thanks Tracy for taking the time to leave a comment, you’re about the only one who does xxx

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