Educate yourself about food items you buy from your local grocery store. Smartphones arm us with many apps, one I found extremely interesting and helpful is the Fooducate. There are similar apps, this one just happened to be the one we used to scan our food items. Use your phone to scan a UPC barcode and receive an instant rating along with nutritional information, and alternative choices. To locate a food app go to the application market place on your phone and search on the keyword food.
We used the smartphone app to scan barcodes found on food products in our house. I was happy to find that most products were very healthy; however, some surprised me as not so healthy. One refrigerated product we scanned is a popular butter substitute spread. The app came back with nutritional information, a rating, and alternative choices. In addition, it provided some information about a particular ingredient used as a preservative in the product. This prompted me to investigate the ingredient and to make the decision not to purchase this product in the future. On another food item, the nutritional label listed 0 trans fat, but after scanning the barcode we found that it did contain trans fat. According to the Fooducate app I experimented with, there is a loop whole that manufactures use. If there is less than half a gram of trans fat per serving, manufactures can round the amount of trans fat down to zero, resulting in a labeling of 0 trans fat.
Scan before you buy to make healthy food choices for you and your family. If the product does not meet your nutritional needs, or if you find a particular ingredient suspect, select an alternative product right at the store. It is all at your fingertips. Feel confident in the choices you are making, buy food products that are satisfying to the taste and meet your nutritional needs. For the health conscious person, the food app can be one more ingredient in your treasure trove of information.