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Food Label Reading Lesson and PowerPoint: Is this product healthy?

Lesson Title: Food Label Reading Lesson and PowerPoint: Is this product healthy?

Equipment Needed:
• “How to Read a Food Label” PowerPoint Presentation (optional, but you can download it for free at:

• calculators

• Food Label Reading Worksheet -I will cut and paste below, but you can download it for free at: (

• 1 wrapper/product for each student or printed labels below-1 for each student. I will cut and paste below, but you can download it for free at:

Pre-Lesson To Do:
• collect enough food products to have 1 for each student. (I had mine bring them in for 1 point of extra credit each until I had a box full!) If you don’t have products, print the food labels below.
• print worksheets-enough for 1 sheet for each student


1. I hook students into this food label reading activity by talking about how companies may try to deceive you into buying their products and I show real products and have students get their calculators ready and help me add up some of these deceptions: (see 2nd PowerPoint Slide)

• they may have an unrealistic serving size (I show them a real Tostitos bag where the serving size is 6 chips!)

• servings per contanier may be unrealistic (show a real jumbo muffin wrapper that has 3 servings per container-how would you even cut that into thirds??!!) or show a King Size Chili Cheese Fritos with 4.5 servings per container (can you do that math in your head?)

• it can have deceptive packaging (have a strawberry Poptart wrapper to show them-there are 4 strawberries on the front and then read them the ingredients)

• beware of asterisks! (show a brownie box that lists the calories and fat of just the dry brownie mix-like who would just eat that?) or worse show them the most deceptive label I’ve ever found-Kraft Mac ‘n Cheese where it lists 2.5 grams of fat with an asterisk that tells you they’re just counting what’s in the box (in other words if you just ate the noodles hard out of the box!) With butter, milk and cheese it’s really 16 grams of fat and 3 servings per container so it’s really 48 grams of fat not 2.5!!!!)


2. If time you can have students turn to their partner and see if they can think of a product where the food label was deceptive. Share out to class if time.


3. Go over the rest of the Food Label PowerPoint to teach how to read a fool label and what is most important on a food label.

4. Hand out the Food Label Reading worksheet to each student (they don’t choose a product yet) (I’ll cut and paste it below, but you can get it in a better format for free at the above website)

5. Next I go through the A & W sundae on the PowerPoint as they follow looking at their worksheet so they will know what to do when they choose a product.

6. After the explanation and demonstration, have each student either pick a product/wrapper, or have each pick a food label (free at the above link) to read. Walk around and help – it involves some math so have calculators handy and be ready to be a math teacher for a few minutes.


7. If time, you could go around the room and have each student share what % fat and sugar their product was and if it would make the vending machine.

Reflection/Follow Up:
I follow this lesson the next day with my “Food Label Scavenger Hunt” Activity (*see it here:


Homework could include students filling out the goal sheet in the “Eating Healthy for Life” for a week (see link below) or you could take students to the computer lab and show them a cool calorie counter on igoogle and they could keep track of calories for a week. (*see lesson link below). Or, I also have a “Fat and Sugar Homework” assignment (*see it at: ).

Food Label Reading Worksheet:

Name:_______________________________________ Date:_________ Per:_______
Food Label Worksheet

copy a real food label here………………….

Choose a food label from the class box – the product must have fat and sugar in it:

1. Write the name of your food product here:_______________________________________

2. Write the Serving Size of your product: _________________________________________

3. How many Servings Per Container?___________________________________________

-If there is more than one serving per container, and you ate THE
WHOLE CONTAINER, how many calories would you really be eating?

(Calories x how many servings = ) ______________.

-If there is more than one serving and you ate the whole container, how many Total Fat grams would you really be eating?
(Total Fat grams x how many servings = ) ______________.

Is your product’s serving size realistic for you to eat? YES______ or NO______

Have they been deceptive by listing a small serving size? YES____ or NO______

4. What is the Total Fat listing for 1 serving of your food?__________________

The two fats that are bad for you are: SATURATED FAT + TRANS FAT.

If your product lists Saturated Fat, how many grams does it have in one serving?______

If your product lists the ingredients, do you see “hydrogenated,” or “partially hydrogenated” ? YES_______ (If yes, THAT’s TRANS FAT!) NO_______

5. What is the Sugars listing for 1 serving of your food?__________________



Calories from Fat ÷ total calories =________________ % Total Fat

Is your product’s total fat under 35%? YES_______ or NO_______


Sugar grams x 4 (since there are 4 calories in every gram)

÷ total calories =________________% Sugar

Is your products sugar less than 35%? YES_________ NO__________


YES _____________ NO______________

Have Fun!! My website has other free and for sale lessons:

or check out my full profile at:

You will find these other nutrition lessons for free and for sale: (just do a search for these titles)

*Food Label Scavenger Hunt Lesson: Worksheet + 42 Food Labels to Read

*Lose Weight, Get Healthier Plan: Individual Habits Survey + Check off

*iGoogle Calorie Counter Worksheet: Learn How to Use Nutrition Gadgets

*Fat and Sugar Experiment Lesson: Measure crisco + sugar into baggies!

*A Fun Way to Learn How Cutting Calories Leads to Weight Loss Lesson

*A Fun Way to Learn How to Eat from All Food Groups Lesson: PwrPoint +

*Lesson Plan: How Calories are Burned through Exercise Worksheet

Nutrition Facts
Board Game: Fun and
Educational! (Word +
PDF formats)

Gaining Muscle
Weight Brochure:
Eating Healthy to
Put on Weight

Calcium Lesson for
Teens: PowerPoint,
and Follow-up

How to Improve Body
Image: A Brochure
for Teens

Why Water is Good
For You and a Check
Off Sheet for Extra

Calorie Counting
Website: Worksheet
to go with great
Calorie Website

Health Lesson:
Research Own Family
Medical History + Genetic Diseases

Heartrate and Target
Zones Posters-great
for gym and

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