Have You Ever Wondered

  • if coconut milk is high in fat? One cup of canned coconut milk (made by combining grated coconut meat and coconut water) contains 445 calories and 48 fat grams (of which 43 fat grams are saturated). Coconut water, or liquid, drained from a fresh coconut—without any grated coconut meat—has just 46 calories and less than 1 fat gram per cup. Just V4cup of dried, sweetened coconut has 87 calories and 6 fat grams. Look for canned coconut milk with less fat.
  • if salmon is lower in fat than chicken? Salmon has about 185 calories and 9 fat grams per 3-ounce cooked portion compared with 190 calories and 9 fat grams in the same portion of roasted, light-meat chicken with the skin on. Skinless, this same portion of chicken contains about 150 calories and 3 fat grams. The potential benefits of salmon: more omega-3 fatty acids.
  • if air-popped popcorn is always low in fat? Not always. If you buy it ready-made, check the Nutrition Facts for total fat, saturated fat, and trans fat content. Although the package may say "air-popped," oil may be added after popping as a flavoring. For microwave popcorn, check the label to see if oil is added—and how much and what kind. And what about the bucket of popcorn you buy in malls or movie theaters? It's usually loaded with fat; satisfy your appetite with the small-size order.
  • if ghee is a good substitute for butter? Commonly used in the cuisine of India, ghee is clarified butter. It's been heated, then strained to remove milk solids so the fat is slightly concentrated—with more fat and calories per teaspoon. Why clarify butter? Without the milk solids, it can be heated to a higher temperature without burning.
  • how the fat in feta cheese compares with that in other cheeses? It's somewhat lower—but not much. An ounce of feta cheese has 6 grams of fat, which includes 4 grams of saturated fat. By comparison, 1 ounce of Cheddar cheese has 9 total fat grams, including 6 grams of saturated fat. With their intense flavors, small amounts of strong cheeses such as feta, Parmesan, and blue cheese go a long way in delivering flavor.

free foods. See "LabelLingo: Fats and Cholesterol" below.

Choose Healthy Oils

  • Use vegetable oils—canola, corn, cottonseed, olive, safflower, soybean, sunflower—in place of stick margarine or butter. Mayonnaise, certain salad dressings, and soft (tub or squeeze) margarine with no trans fats are mainly oils, too.
  • Fit nuts, olives, avocados, and fatty fish into a healthful eating plan. These foods have healthy oils, too!

Label Lingo

Fats and Cholesterol

Check food labels for clues about fat and cholesterol. You may find nutrient content claims.

For Fat Content...

Fat-free Less than 0.5 gram fat per serving

Low-fat 3 grams or less of fat per serving

Reduced or less fat At least 25% less fat* per serving

Light V3 fewer calories or 50% less fat* per serving

_% fat-free The food meets the definition of "low-fat" or "fat-free" if stated as 100% fat-free

Light meal "Low-fat" (at least 50% less fat per serving*) or "low-calorie" meal (at least V3 fewer calories per serving*)

Low-fat meal 3 grams or less fat per 100

grams, and 30 percent or less calories from fat

Low saturated fat

Reduced or less saturated fat

At least 25% less saturated fat*

For Cholesterol Content...


Low cholesterol

Reduced or less cholesterol

Less than 2 milligrams cholesterol and 2 grams or less of saturated fat per serving 20 milligrams or less cholesterol and 2 grams or less of saturated fat per serving

At least 25% less cholesterol* and 2 grams or less of saturated fat per serving

For Fat, Saturated Fat, and Cholesterol Content . . .


Extra leant

For Saturated Fat Content . . .

Saturated-fat-free Less than 0.5 gram saturated fat and less than 0.5 gram trans fatty acids per serving

1 gram or less saturated fat per serving and no more than 15% of calories from saturated fat

Less than 10 grams total fat, 4.5 grams or less saturated fat, and 95 milligrams cholesterol per 3-ounce serving and per 100 grams

Less than 5 grams total fat, 2 grams saturated fat, and 95 milligrams cholesterol per 3-ounce serving and per 100 grams

*Compared with a standard serving size of traditional food ^On packaged seafood or game meat; cooked meat; or cooked poultry

Note: Although not a nutrient content claim per se, look for packages that say "0 g trans fat" or "no trans fat."

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