The best way to know what you are eating is to analyse the nutritional labels of our food products. Have you ever tried ? If so, it’s highly likely you didn’t understand them. And for good reason! It’s true scientific gibberish; a word that’s almost impossible to pronounce, followed by figures, letters and percentages. It’s an ordeal for anyone to decipher! But thankfully, Yuka app has been launched to help us understand this nutritional data.
YUKA App: What is it?
Yuka is a free and independent app available on IOS and Android. Yuka promises a quick food analysis to guide you in your food choices. The result ? Better eating for better health.
YUKA App: How does it work?
Firstly, an image of the bar code is analysed. Yuka evaluates each product according to three criteria: nutritional quality, presence of additives and the biological dimension of the product. Once the product has been fully analysed, it issues a ‘nutriscore’ : green, orange, or red and a score out of 100 that informs the consumer whether the product is good or bad for your health.
A chart using the three coloured code allows you to track the distribution over the previous thirty days of your food, from the healthiest to the worst. Yuka specifies which foods to be careful of and which ones to favour. You can then create a list of your favourite products.
What is a good or bad product?
Nutritional quality represents 60% of the score, the presence of additives 30% and the biological dimension 10%. Therefore a product that is said to be good for your health will have a rating close to 100 with a green code and vice versa for a so called bad product that contains too many additives, that is fattening, too sweet, or too salty. In some cases Yuka will recommend a similar product with better nutritional qualities.
Positive and negative points
It has fun design and an easy-to-use interface that makes Yuka’s application intuitive and enjoyable. A rapid analysis and the suggestion of healthier alternatives makes Yuka a good way to decipher nutrition labels.
Nevertheless, there are some aspects that need to be improved. The fact that Yuka uses a free data band with information supplied by users (openfoodfact), you’re often likely to find false information on certain products, such as errors in calories or the number of additives.
Yuka does not take into account the quantity or a certain food’s position in a diet. For example, some basic products like salad dressings or cheeses are classified as ‘bad’ because they are too fattening, or contain too many saturated fatty acids. But these foods should not be excluded from a healthy and balanced diet.
In conclusion, Yuka is a great aid to help you make the right dietary choices, but its important to remain vigilant.