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Whole Grain Foods

A guide to making smart food choices

Whole grains are essential to eating well, and there are many delicious ways to enjoy them. Critical nutrients, including B vitamins and fiber, are naturally part of whole grains, but may be lost in processing and refining. The 2015 Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends children and adults get 3-5 (one-ounce) servings per day, and at least half of those items should contain 50% or more of whole grain ingredients. Sorting out which items contain whole grain is challenging. The Know Your Colors Whole Grain nutrition guide can help you quickly find Whole Grain items that also meet nutrition standards recommended by the Dietary Guidelines and American Heart Association, including:


  • May include independent certification of whole grain content
  • Benefit of 1 gram fiber per 15 gm serving of carbohydrate OR no added sugars
  • Limited sodium and saturated fat


How much is a one ounce serving?


Most grain food labels are shown in one-ounce servings (or 28 grams) on the nutrition fact panel. Sometimes the label shows how many grams of whole grain are in the item – 8 grams is one- half serving, 16 grams is a whole serving.

Examples include:

1 cup of cereal

1 slice of bread

1 small muffin

½ cup cooked pasta

½ cup white or brown rice

Whole Grain


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First ingredient is a whole grain and second ingredient is not sugar or the product bears a whole grain stamp; no more than 4g sat fat, no more than 480mg sodium, at least 1g fiber per 15g carb or no added sugar.

Look for the color indicators ‣

Each nutrition attribute has a unique color – “Heart Smart” is red, “Organic” is dark green. Look for the color bars on the shelf tag, or explore the color icons when you shop online. Scanning for colors at the shelf makes it quick and easy to find Low Sodium foods (yellow), Carb Smart foods (orange) or Gluten Free items (Blue). Shopping with your kids? Make it a game and energize your whole family to eat well! That is smart food shopping, simplified.

Carry your colors with you! Download our guide to making smart food choices.

1. On shelf tags in store

Color bars can be found here on the shelf tags

2. Online

Plant powered items

Online icons can be found on the shopping page

Shop Whole Grain Ingredients

We strive to highlight Whole Grain items on shelf tags and on website shopping resources, but due to data and product changes, all items that meet the standard may not be tagged. Please be sure the bar code/UPC number on the item matches the shelf tag item/UPC number.

The Whole Grain color guide on shelf tags in stores is brown, and may help time-crunched shoppers locate items that meet lifestyle goals. Please see the standards below for the full criteria. The Know Your Colors Program (https://www.pricechopper.com/know-your-colors/) is intended for general nutrition information and not as a treatment for any issue or condition.

Please consult your healthcare provider and/or registered dietitian-nutritionist for information directly relating to individual health needs. Read the entire food label to get complete information on any product. It is anticipated that the Know Your Colors standards may be updated or changed as national guidelines, including the Dietary Guidelines for Americans, are revised to include new evidence and science. (https://www.fda.gov/food/food-labeling-nutrition/fda-nutrition-innovation-strategy) Please contact our Consumer Services Department with any questions. https://www.pricechopper.com/about-us/customer-service/contact-us/

V1 1/2020