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Percent Daily Value: What does it mean?By Mayo Clinic staff
Original Article: http://www.mayoclinic.com/health/food-and-nutrition/AN00284
- With Mayo Clinic nutritionist
Katherine Zeratsky, R.D., L.D.read biographyclose window
Katherine Zeratsky, R.D., L.D.Katherine Zeratsky, R.D., L.D.
As a specialty editor for the nutrition and healthy eating guide, Katherine Zeratsky helps you sort through the facts and figures, the fads and the hype to learn more about nutrition and diet.
A Marinette, Wis., native, Katherine is certified in dietetics by the state of Minnesota and the American Dietetic Association. She has been with Mayo Clinic since 1999.
She is active in nutrition-related curriculum and course development in wellness nutrition at Mayo Clinic in Rochester, Minn., and nutrition education related to weight management and practical applications of nutrition-related lifestyle changes.
Other areas of interest include food and nutrition for all life stages, active lifestyles and the culinary arts.
She graduated from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, served a dietetic internship at the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics, and worked as a registered dietitian and health risk counselor at ThedaCare of Appleton, Wis., before joining the Mayo Clinic staff.
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Percent Daily Value: What does it mean?
What does Percent Daily Value mean on food labels?
from Katherine Zeratsky, R.D., L.D.
The Percent Daily Value on the Nutrition Facts label is a guide to the nutrients in one serving of food. For example, if the label lists 15 percent for calcium, it means that one serving provides 15 percent of the calcium you need each day.
The Percent Daily Values are based on a 2,000-calorie diet for healthy adults. Even if your diet is higher or lower in calories, you can still use the Percent Daily Value as a guide. For example, the Percent Daily Value can help you determine whether a food is high or low in specific nutrients:
- If a food has 5 percent or less of a nutrient, it's considered to be low in that nutrient.
- If it has 20 percent or more, it's considered to be high in that nutrient.
Note that the Food and Drug Administration has not set a Daily Value for trans fat, and health experts recommend avoiding trans fat to lower your risk of cardiovascular disease. Similarly, there is no established Daily Value for sugar.
To get the most benefit from Percent Daily Values, use them to choose foods high in vitamins, minerals and fiber — and to limit foods high in fat, cholesterol and sodium.Next question
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- How to understand and use the Nutrition Facts label. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. http://www.fda.gov/Food/ResourcesForYou/Consumers/NFLPM/ucm274593.htm#see6. Accessed Jan. 17, 2012.
- Calculate the Percent Daily Value for the appropriate nutrients. U.S. Food and Drug Administration. http://www.fda.gov/Food/GuidanceComplianceRegulatoryInformation/GuidanceDocuments/FoodLabelingNutrition/FoodLabelingGuide/ucm064928.htm. Accessed Jan. 17, 2012.
- Zeratsky KA (expert opinion). Mayo Clinic, Rochester, Minn. March 16, 2012.