Ignore daily values
Shocking but true: Some information on food labels is based on science from back in the ’80s! Schwartz recently discovered that percent daily value (% DV) figures are not up to date with Health Canada’s current recommendations. For instance, the recommended daily intake for vitamin D today is 600 IU, but the daily percentage listed on food labels is based on 200 IU. So what does this mean? “A label will tell you that one cup of milk provides 45 percent of your daily vitamin D, which suggests that drinking about two cups gives you all you need,” says Schwartz. “But you’re actually getting only a third.”
Bottom line: Don’t use the % DV column to track your daily nutrient intake — Health Canada says it’s just there to help you compare products. Instead, look at the actual amounts of nutrients listed. And remember this trick: 5% DV or less is a little, 15% DV or more is a lot.