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Are Calories The First Item You Notice?

December 16, 2019

Are Calories The First Item You Notice?

Whether consciously or not, people often focus on calories when making decisions about what to eat.  In recent years government regulation has mandated that calories be written in larger, bolder font, which seems to downplay the importance of other items on the nutritional labels and the list of ingredients. But considering where calories come from and the nutritional benefits of those calories, rather than just their total amount, will create better health outcomes. At Read The Ingredients, we want to help you become more aware of what you are putting into your body. And, when it comes to calories, you should focus on quality rather than quantity. Whether you’re looking for a nutritious breakfast or lunch, or healthy energy bars to fuel you when you’re on the go, we hope that you’ll read the ingredients first!

So, what should you look for when you read the ingredients and nutrition facts for a prepared or packaged food item?  Consider the following:

Carbohydrates

Do carbohydrate grams come from whole sources such as fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, or from refined grains and added sugars?  While sugar may enhance the taste of food, the calories it provides offer little in the way of nutritional benefit and too much may even cause disease.

Fats

Fats are an essential nutrient in our diet, yet not all fats are equally healthful.  To benefit most from the fat we take in, limit foods high in cholesterol and saturated fats, which have a negative impact on heart health, and focus on incorporating monounsaturated fats and omega-3 fatty acids.

Protein

Protein is crucial for cellular function, including muscle growth and satiety.  However, the source of the protein we consume will determine its positive and negative health impacts.

Read the Ingredients

We want every day to be the best it can be for you, and that’s why we’ve made it our mission to create healthy meal and snack options made with all-natural, quality ingredients. The next time you feel hunger coming on, we hope you will read the ingredients first so you can make an educated choice about what you eat and understand that counting calories does not correlate to healthy eating. Considering the entire nutritional breakdown of a food will help you make more effective food choices that benefit your immediate and overall health. Just take a look at our healthy energy bars compared to other popular breakfast and lunch foods and you’ll see the difference!  


Nutrition Comparison of RTI Banana Nut Loaf vs. Other “Healthy” Breakfast and Lunch Foods

 

RTI LOAF (BANANA NUT)

Mush overnight oats, vanilla bean

Rolled oats (2/3 cup dry) prepared with almond milk (1/2 cup), dash salt, blueberries (1/2 cup)

Whole wheat bread (2 slices) with 2 tbsp peanut butter, medium banana

Purely Elizabeth granola, Maple & almond butter, 2/3 cup with ½ cup almond milk

Starbucks sprouted grain bagel with 1.5 oz cream cheese

Starbucks banana loaf

Panera Pick 2:

Half Tuscan grilled chicken sandwich, half Fuji apple salad with chicken

Soozy’s Grain free muffins, wild blueberry

Daily Harvest smoothie, strawberry peach

Serving size

4.75 oz (134g)

6 oz (170 grams)

N/A

N/A

N/A

5.5 oz (156g)

1 slice, 125g

N/A

2 muffins, 128g

8.05 oz (229g)

Calories

385

310

288

520

320

502

420

740

340

150

Total fat

24g

9g

5g

20g

13.3g

19g

22g

37g

20g

15g

Saturated fat

3g

1g

1g

4g

5g

8.8g

3g

10.5g

14g

0g

Cholesterol

1 mg

0 mg

0 mg

0 mg

0 mg

44 mg

65 mg

100 mg

72 mg

0 mg

Carbohydrates

33g

42g

55g

72g

45g

66g

52g

60g

34g

33g

Fiber

9g

8g

8g

10g

6.3g

8g

2g

5g

8g

7g

Sugars

8g

10g

14.5g

21.6g

18.6g

7.6g

30g

13g

14g

20g

Added sugars

0g

0g

0g

0g

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

N/A

0g

Protein

15g

9g

8g

19.4g

8.5g

19.7g

6g

42g

8g

3g

Sodium

309 mg

70 mg

224 mg

539 mg

210 mg

657 mg

320 mg

N/A

272 mg

10 mg

Calcium

13% DV

4% DV

26% DV

16% DV

26% DV

9% DV

2% DV

N/A

8% DV

2% DV

Iron

17% DV

15% DV

16% DV

17% DV

14% DV

11% DV

10% DV

N/A

12% DV

6% DV

Potassium

18% DV

N/A

13% DV

32% DV

3% DV

2% DV

0% DV

N/A

N/A

10% DV

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gluten free

 

 

 

 

Dairy free

 

 

 

 


 

Nutrition Comparison of RTI Chocolate Chip Big Bite vs. Other “Healthy” Snack Foods

 

RTI BIG BITE

(CHOCOLATE CHIP)

Kind bar, peanut butter dark chocolate

 

Perfect bar, dark chocolate chip peanut butter

GoMacro bar, maple sea salt

RXBAR, apple cinnamon

Sargento Balanced Breaks®, Natural White Cheddar Cheese with Almonds & Dried Cranberries Chobani Flip Almond Coco Loco

Serving size

1.75 oz (50g)

1.41 oz (40g)

2.29 oz 65 g

2.29 oz, 65g

1.83 oz, 52g

1.52 oz 43 g

5.3 oz (150g)

Calories

170

200

320

260

210

190

230

Total fat

13g

13g

19g

10g

8g

11g

10g

Saturated fat

2g

3.5g

3g

1.5g

1g

4.5g

4.5g

Cholesterol

1 mg

0 mg

10 mg

0 mg

0mg

20 mg

15 mg

Carbohydrates

9g

16 g

25g

35g

24g

14g

23g

Fiber

2g

3 g

3g

2g

5g

2g

2g

Sugars

4g

9 g

18g

12g

14g

8g

19g

Added sugars

0g

8 g

N/A

N/A

0g

N/A

N/A

Protein

5g

8 g

15g

11g

12g

7g

12g

Sodium

118 mg

35 mg

110 mg

150 mg

125 mg

180 mg

100 mg

Calcium

6% DV

2% DV

10% DV

10% DV

4% DV

20%

15% DV

Iron

7% DV

6% DV

6% DV

15% DV

6% DV

2%

6% DV

Potassium

6% DV

4% DV

13% DV

N/A

10% DV

N/A

N/A

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Gluten free

Dairy free

 

 

 

 

Make a Better Choice

In a world full of food products disguised as being healthy, we hope that you’ll stop and take the time to learn more about them before making a choice. Looking for low-sugar, healthy energy bars made with real food ingredients and none of the things you don’t want like gluten, added sweeteners, or preservatives? Shop Read the Ingredients to learn more about our ingredients and to place your order for any of our delicious, nutritionally-rich loaves and big bites. Fuel your body with a better choice that you can feel good about. Order yours today!  





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