New Food Rating System Tells You What You're Really Eating

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New Food Rating System Tells You What You're Really Eating
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New Food Rating System Tells You What You're Really Eating

The EWG's new food rating system scores more than 80,000 grocery store items to help you make healthy choices. Read on to learn more about Food Scores.

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According to EWG, Food Scores is the first guide that rates on food on three critical factors: nutritional value, health concerns about ingredients and contaminants and the degree and type of processing. Fox News reports that 70 percent of the score is based on nutrition, followed by 20 percent for ingredients and 10 percent for processing.

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Foods are ranked on a score of 1 (the best) to 10 (the worst). Only one out of every six products received top ratings (1 - 3.5), while one out of four received poor scores (8-10).

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Food Scores reveals some surprising facts about the American food landscape. It found 58 percent of products contained added sugars, and the average food is 13 percent sugar by weight! In addition, the average food product contains 14 ingredients.

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Food categories that stood out as some of the worst offenders for food additives, preservatives and other contaminants were meat products, stuffing and cold cereal. EWG describes cold cereal as "particularly notorious for added sugar."

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Another common junk food in disguise was granola and trail mix bars. The EWG found that some products had sugar account for nearly a third of the bar's weight!

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The system pulls from data gathered by LabelINSIGHT®, an independent product label database and analysis platform.

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Want to look up your favorite food products using Food Scores? Get started here.

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Do you find yourself wandering the aisles of a grocery store unsure of what food products are truly good for you and what's marketing hype? It's common to see "natural," "whole grain" and "organic" plastered all over food packaging, but these claims can often be misleading. What's a shopper to do?

Just this week, the Environmental Working Group (EWG) released a new rating system called Food Scores: Rate Your Plate to help you decipher the quality of the food you eat, and it's a powerful tool that can help weed out junk food in disguise. Pulling from a database of over 80,000 grocery items, the rating system scores food based on nutritional information, ingredients of concern and processing to rank products from a score of 1 (the best) to 10 (the worst).

Food Scores can be accessed on the go using your smartphone or by scanning a barcode and at home on your computer.

Check out the slideshow above to discover how Food Scores works, what the scoring system reveals about our food landscape and more.

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