Finding the line: are “light” products a good solution?

Light products are now an integral part of our daily lives. You can find them on all the shelves of supermarkets. Loud advertising campaigns accompanied by photos of models thinner than each other are there to convince the consumer that light products contribute to a healthy diet. What is it really?

What’s in a “light” product?

A product labeled “light” must contain at least 30% fewer sugars, fats and calories than the normal version. As far as salt is concerned, this reduction must be at least 25%. In Europe, the producer is obliged by law to clearly label on the packaging the properties that make the product light.

“Light” can make you fatter than a normal product

The terms “fewer calories” and “no calories” should not be confused, nor “less fat” and “low fat”. Some desserts, even in their light version, still contain more calories than a simple fruit. We also tend to believe that we can eat more on the pretext that the product is light. Swallowing the whole box of light biscuits will result in ingesting more fat and calories on arrival than if you ate a few classic biscuits.

What are the health benefits of “light” products?

Light cheese is considered a good alternative to normal cheese, provided of course that you don’t put too much of it on the toast. Light sodas too, they are less caloric than classic sodas but can encourage us to quench our thirst with something other than water, which is not very appropriate, in any case too frequently. Drinking water regularly will also help eliminate the addiction to sugary drinks.

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How much “light” product to consume?

Even when a product perfectly meets the criteria for the “light” label, it may not necessarily be good for your figure or your health. In order to reduce the energy value, producers replace sugar with sweeteners, which are less caloric but which maintain the appetite for sweetness. Their use is therefore strictly regulated. They will be safe as long as you do not exceed the acceptable daily dose. It is therefore advisable for adults not to drink more than 50 cl of diet soda per day. Teenagers will be satisfied with 33 cl, the equivalent of a can. And the children, a (small) glass.


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