Day 17: How many types of sugar are in your food?
Posted by kathryn in Labels & advertising
Today’s task in 31 Days to a Better Diet is centred on improving your awareness of what you eat. And today we’re talking about food labelling.
If you’re buying food in a packet, it’s likely to contain more ingredients than you’d think.
Some of this is logical. To get a food to retain its shape, flavour, texture and stay fresh for more than a week, manufacturers have to add flavour enhancers, preservatives, gums, texturisers.
Manufacturers also want you to buy their product. And they know we humans love the flavour and textures of salt, sugar and fat. The more of these three they can add, the more likely you are to choose their product over a competitors.
However, they also know most people are trying to reduce the amount of salt, sugar and fat in their diet. One method used to disguise the presence of these three is to use different forms. Several different sugars, under several different names can make it difficult for unwitting shoppers to know exactly what’s in the food they’re eating.
Today’s challenge in 31 Days to a Better Diet is to pull three products out of your cupboard and see how many different sugars they contain.
Take a look at the ingredients list and see how many of the following words and phrases you can find:
- glucose syrup
- corn syrup
- golden syrup
- high fructose corn syrup
- almost anything ending in the letters -ose
All these ingredients are, or contain, sugar. So while a product may list the word sugar low down on the ingredients, if it contains any of these other ingredients, it’s not as low in sugar as it seems.