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Anatomy of a Food Label

Why do different types of biological molecules have different nutritional values? I t would be convenient, if a bit boring, to be able to get all of our nutritional needs from a single food. In fact, we need to eat a wide range of food types to have a healthy diet. Only protein can provide us with the nitrogen needed to build new amino acids and proteins. Humans are incapable of synthesizing certain amino acids and foods containing the essential amino acids are necessary in our diet. Other foods provide us with trace elements and vitamins that we cannot synthesize ourselves. Lipids contain chemical bonds with a large amount of free energy relative to carbohydrates. Lipids are a good source of ‘high energy’ food and are also a useful form for storing excess calories.

View the animation below, then complete the quiz to test your knowledge of the concept.






1Why is the information on a Nutrition Facts Label standardized?
A)to be sure the serving size is the amount a person really eats
B)so it can be used in other countries
C)so consumers can compare similar foods
D)to confuse consumers



2Which of the following do not have a % Daily Value listed.
A)Total fat and Sodium
B)Trans fat and Protein
C)Trans fat and Sodium
D)Total fat and Total Carbohydrate



3The established daily value for total fat is based on the recommendation that total fat be no more than what percent of total calories?
A)10%
B)20%
C)30%
D)40%



4What happens to your upper limit of cholesterol recommendation when you eat more calories?
A)it stays the same
B)it increases
C)it decreases
D)there is no upper limit recommended



5What is the recommended upper limit for sodium per day?
A)460 mg
B)4600 mg
C)240 mg
D)2400 mg







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