Nutrient Content Claim and Percentage
Ever wonder what the difference is between fat free, saturated fat free, low fat, reduced and less fat? The government has defined certain claims that can be used on food packaging. For example, you'll see the claim "less sodium" on some brands of chili with beans. This means the product has at least 25% less sodium than the regular version. Some of the popular claims are listed here.
Claims for Calories
Calories free: less than 5 calories per serving
Low calorie: 40 calories or less per serving
Claims for Fat
Fat free: less than 0.5 g of fat or saturated fat per serving
Saturated fat free: less than 0.5 g of saturated fat and less than 0.5 g of trans fatty acids
Low fat: 3 g or less of total fat
Low saturated fat: 1 g or less of saturated fat
Reduced fat or less fat: at least 25% less fat than the regular version
Claims for Sodium
Sodium free or salt free: less than 5 mg of sodium per serving
Very low sodium: 35 mg of sodium or less
Low sodium: 140 mg of sodium or less
Reduced sodium or less sodium: at least 25% less sodium than the regular version
Claims for Cholesterol
Cholesterol free: less than 2 mg per serving
Low cholesterol: 20 mg or less
Reduced cholesterol or less cholesterol: at least 25% less cholesterol than the regular version
Claims for Sugar
Sugar free: less than 0.5 grams (g) of sugar per serving
Reduced sugar: at least 25% less sugar per serving than the regular version
No sugar added or Without added sugars: no sugar or sugar-containing ingredient is added during processing
Claims for Fiber
High fiber: 5 g or more of fiber per serving
Good source of fiber: 2.5 g to 4.9 g of fiber per serving
Percent (%) Daily Value
The Percent (%) Daily Value indicates how much of a specific nutrient one serving of food contains compared to recommendations for the whole day. The percentage is based on a 2000-calorie diet. If you need more or fewer calories, then your Daily Values would be different.
To find out how many calories you need each day, talk with your dietitian or certified diabetes educator. The Percent (%) Daily Value is a useful tool to check whether a food is high or low in a certain nutrient such as fat or fiber. A product is:
- A good source of a particular nutrient if one serving provides 10 to 19% of the Daily Value
- High in a given nutrient if it contains 20% or more of the Daily Value
- Low in that nutrient if the Daily Value is 5% or less
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