Simply Healthy Shelf Tags
Simply Healthy is a new, color-coded guide to products with healthy attributes throughout the store. These color-coded labels are printed right on our price tags to make it easier to find products that are Gluten Free, Sugar Free, Heart Healthy, All-Natural and Low Carb. So now you can find what you’re looking for without having to read the fine print on every package. It’s just one more way we’re making your shopping experience Refreshingly Simple.
Foods with the Gluten Free shelf tag are identified by the manufacturer as gluten-free and follow FDA guidelines. People should follow a gluten free diet if they have celiac disease or gluten intolerance. Celiac disease is an autoimmune disorder caused by gluten intolerance. The treatment for celiac disease is to completely eliminate gluten from the diet. Gluten is a protein that is found in wheat, barley, and rye. Oats are also commonly contaminated with gluten, so often oats have to be avoided as well. It can be a challenge to determine if a food contains gluten, because a lot of foods have hidden sources of gluten, such as soy sauce and malt. At Belle Foods, we make it easy to find gluten free foods with our Gluten Free shelf tags. Gluten free foods are found throughout the store. First, shop the perimeter of the store where most foods are gluten free. Produce (fruits and vegetables), meat, and dairy are all naturally gluten free. Foods such as breaded meats or yogurt with granola do contain gluten though, because of the grain foods added to them. In the interior of the store, look for the many foods that are labeled with the Gluten Free shelf tag. These tags are updated monthly throughout the store to reflect any changes in ingredients.
Not all carbs are bad for you! Fruit, vegetables, whole grains, and low-fat dairy all have carbohydrates and are part of a healthy diet. When most people say “carbs” they are referring to food products made of grains such as bread, pasta, cereals, crackers, and baked foods such as cakes and cookies. Knowing what carbs are good for you can help you follow a healthy diet. At Belle Foods, we make it simple for you to find healthy carbs. Look for our Carb Smart shelf tags to help you choose healthy grain options. These foods are low in sugar and contain whole grains or provide a good source of fiber. Criteria for Carb Smart shelf-tags: • ≤ 12 g total sugar per serving • Contain whole grains (whole grain listed as first ingredient on ingredient list) or provide a good source of fiber (>10% Daily Value of fiber per serving) • ≤ 1g saturated fat per serving • ≤ 35g carbohydrate per serving Choosing healthy carbs is important for all people, but especially people with diabetes. Eating foods that are lower in total carbohydrate and higher in fiber can help manage blood glucose levels. All foods identified by the Carb Smart shelf tag fit these criteria.
Some sugars are naturally found in foods such as fruit and milk, but the majority of the sugars eaten by Americans come from added sugars. These sugars are added during processing and preparation of food products. Foods high in added sugars are a concern because they increase calories in the diet without providing much or any nutritional value such as vitamins, minerals, or fiber. When a person’s diet is high in foods with added sugars, it is hard to obtain all the essential nutrients in the diet while staying within a reasonable calorie range to prevent weight gain. Food sources high in added sugars:
• Soda, energy drinks, sports drinks, fruit drinks
• Pastries and donuts
• Pie and cobblers
• Ice cream
To help you limit added sugars in your diet and focus on eating more nutritious foods, look for the Sugar Aware shelf tags at Belle Foods which identify foods containing 9 grams of total sugars or less per serving.
As foods become more processed and ingredients become more artificial, we move further away from the natural state of foods. To help you get back to the basics, look for the All Natural shelf tags throughout the Belle Foods stores to locate food and beverage products identified by the manufacturer as natural. These foods are all minimally processed with no artificial colors or ingredients. Find All Natural foods throughout the store:
• Bakery foods
• Baking ingredients and spices
• Condiments and sauces
• Cereals and granola bars
• Dairy- milk, cheese, and yogurt
• Meat and seafood
• Frozen foods
• And more!
Belle Foods makes it easy to find heart healthy foods while grocery shopping by labeling them with Heart Healthy shelf tags. The Heart Healthy shelf tags identify foods that have all of the following criteria:
• Low fat (≤ 3g total fat)
• Low saturated fat (≤ 1g saturated fat) and ≤ 15% calories from saturated fat
• ≤ 60 mg cholesterol
• ≤ 480 mg sodium
• Provides at least 10% Daily Value for one or more of the following: Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Calcium, Iron, Protein or Fiber
Meals or main dishes have a little different criteria because they account for all or a large portion of a meal. Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States. Lifestyle modifications, including changes to your diet, can help decrease your risk of heart disease. For this reason, it is beneficial for every person to follow a heart healthy diet. A heart healthy diet limits total fat, saturated fat, cholesterol, and sodium, and is high in fiber and other nutrients. How does this help your heart? Diets low in saturated fat and cholesterol and high in fiber can help lower blood cholesterol. Also, low-sodium diets can help lower blood pressure. Limit your total fat intake to between 25 and 35 percent of daily calories. When limiting fat, it’s important to know that not all fats are the same. Some fats are actually good for you, while others are the ones that raise blood cholesterol. Saturated fat comes mostly from animal sources, are solid at room temperature, and can raise blood cholesterol which increases risk of heart disease.
It is recommended to consume >7% of your daily calories from saturated fat. To cut down on saturated fat in your diet, choose lean cuts of meat, remove skins from poultry foods, choose low-fat diary foods, avoid snacks with high saturated fat, and limit butter, margarine, and lard in the diet. Also, look for foods labeled with the Heart Healthy shelf tag, which are all ≤ 1g saturated fat per serving. In addition, cooking preparations may add saturated fat to a dish, so try to grill, bake, broil, or steam foods, instead of deep-frying, pan-frying or sautéing and avoid adding a lot of cheese or creamy sauces to foods. Trans fat is uncommonly found in nature, but is produced sometimes when oils are processed to become solid at room temperature. Trans fat acts like saturated fat in the diet and raises blood cholesterol; trans fat may even raise blood cholesterol more than saturated fat.
For this reason, trans fats should be avoided as much as possible in the diet. Common sources of trans fats are some margarines, cakes, cookies, pastries, pie crusts and other baked snacks, and deep-fried foods. If a food contains trans fat it must be listed on the food package’s nutrition facts under Total Fat. Look for 0 grams of trans fat. Limit trans fat to >1% total daily calories. Dietary cholesterol, or cholesterol from food, raises blood cholesterol and increases a person’s risk of heart disease as well, but to a lesser extent than saturated and trans fats. It is recommended to have a maximum of 300 mg of cholesterol in your diet daily or less than 200 mg if you have heart disease or high blood cholesterol. Cholesterol is from animal food sources only, so is found mostly in meat, eggs, and dairy products. Choose lean cuts of meat and low-fat dairy products to reduce dietary cholesterol in the diet. Also, look for foods labeled with the Heart Healthy shelf tag which are all ≤60 mg of cholesterol per serving. Unsaturated fat (including monounsaturated fat and polyunsaturated fat), are healthier forms of fat and are liquid at room temperature. Polyunsaturated fat is found oils such as safflower, corn, sunflower, soybean, and cottonseed as well as in margarine, some seeds, salad dressings and mayonnaise. Monounsaturated fat is found in olive and canola oils, nuts and nut butters, olives and avocado.
Including a moderate amount of unsaturated fat in your diet is healthy because of their health properties such as lowering blood cholesterol and blood pressure which lowers your risk of heart disease. Both polyunsaturated fat and monounsaturated fat have the potential to lower total blood cholesterol and LDL cholesterol (the “bad cholesterol”), especially when substituting saturated and trans fat in the diet, but polyunsaturated fats may also lower HDL cholesterol (the “good cholesterol”). Limiting polyunsaturated fat to 10% or less and monounsaturated fat to 20% or less of your daily caloric intake is the best recommendation for a healthy diet. Finding heart healthy foods at the grocery store:
• Look for foods with the Heart Healthy shelf tag
• Choose foods lowest in saturated fat and calories
• Avoid any food with trans fat
• Some unsaturated fat (polyunsaturated and/or monounsaturated fat) is healthy