How Accurate Are Nutrition Labels?

short answer: NOT accurate enough.

It’s bad enough nutrition labels are hard to understand. But even if you are able to read a label without referring to an encyclopedia or a dietitian, you may not be getting the right information.

The FDA allows a discrepancy of up to 20% in nutrient values. This means that a 100 calorie snack could actually be 80 calories or 120 calories. Which error do you think is more common?

The amount of fat may be stated as 1 gram per serving size of 20 grams, but with 1.2 grams per 20 gram “suggested” serving and a real serving size of 30 grams, you’ll actually be getting 1.8 grams of fat.

Aside from the allowable errors, manufacturers stray even further in their mistakes. Especially smaller regional brands that may not have the infrastructure that bigger firms do. Check this post on ThatsFit to read some examples or watch through the clip above (6 minutes).

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