Monday, November 4, 2013

Reading the fine print

We all know that junk food is bad for the body, but sometimes it's exactly perfect for the soul.  And while I have a pretty high resistance to most forms of junk food, there are a few on my short list.  One of which is Pringles, although I'm contemplating removing it after what I discovered at the grocery store last week.

Since Pringles introduced "reduced fat" versions several years ago I have always bought them, rationalizing that it wasn't quite so junky as regular.  And sure enough, a casual glance at the package would lead you to believe that you're saving 25% of the calories compared to the regular.  Or something like that -- since fat is an essential ingredient in junk food, you would expect that reducing it by 25% would make a big difference.

But when you flip the can and read the back, you discover that you're only saving 7% of the calories, the difference between 150 and 140 for a serving.

So what's happening?  Yes, we've saved 20 calories worth of fat, along with 4 calories worth of sugar, but they've compensated by increasing the carbohydrates (adding 8 calories) and apparently some other rejiggering that you can't decode from the nutritional label.

I don't know why I was drawn to read the label before putting the can in my shopping cart, but after I did I put the can back on the shelf.  I don't like to feel like a dupe.  And by the way, reducing the fat from 9 grams to 7 isn't 25%, it's 22%.

Whatever happened to truth in advertising?

1 comment:

  1. There never was such a thing as truth in advertising! You didn't really believe that, did you? Advertising is about selling, not about telling the truth. But it sure helps if you can read! And calculate.