Vim & Vigor - Summer 2019 - GMC - 19

eye. Here's a guide to some of the more
popular food terms you might spot
on packaging.
3 USDA ORGANIC The U.S.
Department of Agriculture allows the
use of the word "organic" based on
guidelines regarding issues like soil
quality, animal care practices and pest
control. Genetically modified organisms
(GMOs) are never permitted in organic
products, and farmers cannot use most
fertilizers or pesticides. Livestock must
receive 100 percent organic feed that is
free of chemicals, hormones and antibiotics. While animal welfare and the
environment are important to many
shoppers, Armul notes that "organic
foods are not necessarily healthier." For
mom-and-pop farmers, she adds, creating certified organic foods is "a huge
endeavor. It's very expensive, and the
certification process can take years. A
farm might be working toward it but
still not considered organic."
3 GMO-FREE This label is regulated
by a nonprofit called The Non-GMO
Project and means the food hasn't been
genetically altered in a laboratory. With
GMO foods, some consumers worry
about altering the nutrition profile or
introducing potential allergens, although
organizations like the American Medical
Association and the World Health
Organization have supported the view
that GMOs are safe. Armul notes that
such modification "has been used for
quite a lot of good, too, say by reducing
the need for pesticides." She suggests
that consumers try to think more about
the big nutritional picture. "Personally,
I read the ingredients, and if there are a
lot of simple carbs, corn, corn oil or less
nutritious foods that, yes, also tend to
have those GMOs, then I might reach for
something else," she says.
3 WHOLE FOOD "This is really just
a trendy, unregulated term," Armul
says. But the spirit of the phrase is
something she supports: Choose unprocessed, unpackaged foods. "I like the
idea, because it's a good goal to aim for,"

she says. "It promotes eating foods in
their natural, intact form, like fruits
and vegetables, which tend to be better
for you."
3 SUPERFOOD Armul calls this
one a "wishy-washy word that's kind
of taken off in the media." It's not a
regulated term, and although it usually denotes that a food is packed with
nutrients, shoppers should always read
labels. "It kind of conjures up this image
of a perfect food or magic pill, and I
want to caution against that-you can
even eat too much of a superfood, and
the goal for someone should always be a
well-balanced diet," Armul says.
3 GRASS-FED As the name suggests,
this refers to animals, usually cattle,
that eat grass rather than grain. Armul
says grass-fed beef can be healthier
because the extra fiber gives it more
omega-3 fats, which some researchers
have found to protect against heart
disease. It can also be leaner because
of the lower-calorie diet. "But that
doesn't turn a burger into broccoli,"
she says. "There are a lot of choices
with a meal, and grass-fed might be
one of them, but if you're eating a
burger, pay as much attention to your
toppings, sides and portion sizes, since
it's not usually the beef itself that
causes a burger to be unhealthy."
3 ALL-NATURAL This nebulous
phrase is pretty much just mumbojumbo, Armul says. "That one is completely unregulated," she says, "so
I would tell someone not to pay too
much attention to it." ■

Read a
Nutrition
Label in 60
Seconds
"Don't let the colorful packaging and
tasty descriptions distract you from
focusing on the essential nutritional
information," explains Rashmi Kulkarni,
MD, a primary care provider with GMG's
Covenant Family Medicine. Here are
four tips to remember when deciphering
a label:
1. Check the serving size and look
at the package to gauge how much you'd
eat in a sitting. If that "snack-size" bag
of white cheddar puffs contains four
servings and you're planning to polish it
off, you'll have to quadruple the other
numbers on the label.
2. Look at the calorie count and
do the math based on the serving size
you'll be eating. The Food and Drug
Administration considers 400 or more
to be high-calorie, and nutritionists
typically suggest that a snack not exceed
200 calories.
3. Note the fat content,
cholesterol and sodium. All three have
been linked with health issues like heart
disease, so aim for foods with 10 percent
or less of the daily value for each.
4. Ask: How nutritious is it? The
FDA requires companies to disclose
the amounts of ingredients that many
Americans are lacking in their diets, like
calcium, iron and fiber.

APPOINTMENTS

Know Your Nutritional Needs
Choosing the best foods for you depends on your unique health needs. Ask
your primary care provider what vitamins, nutrients and minerals you need-
and what foods you can find them in. Schedule an appointment today at
gwinnettmedicalgroup.com/pcpscheduling.

SUMME R 2019

19


http://www.gwinnettmedicalgroup.com/pcpscheduling

Vim & Vigor - Summer 2019 - GMC

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Vim & Vigor - Summer 2019 - GMC

Contents
Vim & Vigor - Summer 2019 - GMC - Cover1
Vim & Vigor - Summer 2019 - GMC - Cover2
Vim & Vigor - Summer 2019 - GMC - Contents
Vim & Vigor - Summer 2019 - GMC - 2
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Vim & Vigor - Summer 2019 - GMC - Cover3
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https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/vimvigor_2020fall-gmc
https://www.nxtbook.com/nxtbooks/manifest/vimvigor_2020summer-gmc
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