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Dear Hungry Girl,

Have you heard of a company called Robbins Nest that sells low carb, low cal dessert rolls?  Is the nutritional information on their packages accurate?  I have been suspicious of their products for a while now.

--Skeptical in Sacramento

Dear Skeptical in Sacramento,

When things seem too good to be true, they usually are.  Unfortunately, this may apply to Robbins Nest's so-called diet-friendly desserts.  A few other skeptics (a local news organization in LA, as well as several consumers who have written to me) took some of the company's suspect cake rolls and cheesecakes to the lab for testing.  Turns out the "sugar free", "low carb", "low cal" items that were tested were found to have more calories, fat and carbs than the labels claimed.  Eeeks!  The company insists they've changed their tune and all info on the packages is now accurate, but I'm definitely suspicious so I avoid their stuff at all costs.  Sorry!

Dear Hungry Girl,

I am on a practically salt-free diet.  Is there any type of crunchy snack that is low in sodium, but not low in taste?

--Salt Shunner

Dear Salt Shunner,

As I'm sure you've learned on your low sodium diet, most processed foods are packed with salt.  Believe it or not, there's even a lot of salt in sweet foods like cookies and brownies.  The good news is not all low sodium treats taste like packing material (Yes, I've actually tasted packing material).  Try Glenny's No Salt Added Soy Crisps.  One bag has less than 200mg of sodium -- about half as much as you'd find in regular chips.  If that's still too high, try Newman's Own No Butter/No Salt 94% Fat Free Microwave Popcorn.  This low cal, crunchy snack has just 30mg of sodium per serving.  One warning; don't assume that a product with the word "natural" in it is automatically low in salt.  For example, Orville Redenbacher's Natural Popcorn contains 500mg of sodium per serving.  Always read labels carefully!

Adults need 500 to 1000 milligrams of sodium per day. However, a daily sodium intake of between 1,100 and 3,300 milligrams is considered safe and adequate.

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