What’s Your Nutrition IQ?

We may very well have more variety in the foods we eat than even before. People often eat without knowing much about the nutritional content of food. Even if you are concerned with the nutritional content, you may not be eating what you think you’re eating.

Food is an everyday part of life, but how much do we know about what we eat? We put people to the test. True or false: Vitamin D is a vitamin.

Not so fast. It’s really a hormone that offers bone protection.

Next question: Is there more calcium in skim, 2 percent or whole milk?

Nutritionist and registered dietician Cynthia Thomson, Ph.D., R.D., of the University of Arizona in Tucson, says skim milk has the most. “With each incremental drop in fat content, we see a slight (10 milligram) increase in calcium.”

Do cottage cheese and cream cheese have more, less, or the same amount of calcium as regular cheese?

“Cottage cheese and cream cheese have very low amounts of calcium in them,” says geriatrician Evan W. Kligman, M.D., also of the University of Arizona. Cheeses like Colby and mozzarella have more.

True or false: All wheat bread is a good source of fiber.

Dr. Kligman says, “Most wheat bread is just white bread with a little bit of coloring.”

“If it’s not a whole grain, it’s not going to be high in fiber,” says Thomson.

What’s healthier: butter or margarine?

Dr. Kligman says, “The nod probably now is that butter might be a little more natural, a little bit healthier.

Finally, which type of sugar is more nutritious? Table sugar, fructose or honey?

“Basically, they’re all providing about four calories per gram and there’s not a lot of difference in how they’re metabolized, says Thomson.

Another tip experts add is that calcium is better absorbed when taken with citrus, like orange juice. Also, your body doesn’t absorb all of the calcium in supplements. You may be only getting about a quarter of what the dose really says you’re getting.

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