[ The Real McCoy Online Home ]                                                                                                                        May 23, 2008
News

Commissary customers reading 
labels, making choices

By Maj. Karen Fauber, DeCA Dietitian

      FORT LEE, Va. (Defense Commissary Agency) -- While shopping in the commissary  I saw the most wonderful sight for a dietitian: Everywhere I looked people were reading labels on packages.

Photo: Capt. Beth Deschamps, a Fort Riley, Kan., dietitian, guides Soldiers through reading food labels at the Fort McCoy Commissary. (Photo by Rob Schuette)
Capt. Beth Deschamps, a Fort Riley, Kan., dietitian, guides Soldiers through reading food labels at the Fort McCoy Commissary. (Photo by Rob Schuette)

       I would like to think that they were all trying to make the healthiest choices possible as they took advantage of their commissary benefit.

      This was wonderful to see, because as the Defense Commissary Agency (DeCA) dietitian it's my mission to help our customers make informed decisions about their health.

      According to the 2007 Food & Health Survey, as many as 66 percent of food shoppers are trying to make healthy choices for themselves and their families.

      So it makes sense that more people are reading labels on packages to choose foods that meet their health and dietary needs. However, today it can be a little challenging for shoppers to make those decisions with all the information that is on the labels.

      To help make your shopping easier, try using the "5-20 guide" as a quick tip to label reading. For any nutrient on the food label (usually found on the side or back of the product) consider the following amounts:

  • 5 percent or less is low: For nutrients you need to limit like fat, saturated fat and sodium, choose foods with 5 percent or less daily value.

  • 20 percent or more is high: For nutrients you need more of, such as fiber, calcium and iron, choose foods with 20 percent or more daily value.

      The DeCA, the National Guard Bureau Decade of Health Program and the American Heart Association are working together to help you make your shopping for healthy choices a little bit easier.

      Shoppers can create and print their own shopping list found at http://www.heartcheckmark.org/. 

      Look for more tips on how to make informed choices throughout the month in appreciation for all you do in service to our nation.

      See you in the commissary!

      For more information about healthy food choices and other nutrition topics, go to http://www.commissaries.com and post your questions on the DeCA Dietitian Forum.

      Be sure to look for other useful information in the Dietitian's Voice archive.

      For more information in the Fort McCoy community, visit the Commissary, building 1537, or call the Commissary at (608) 388-3542.

 

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