Actually, it's VERY rare for the deli counter to make their own, unless you're shopping at a specialty store. A lot of what you get at a grocery store deli counter is exactly the same as what's in the cold cuts case-- made by the big companies like Tyson and Hormel, although they're often sold under different brand names. Ask for the label information before you buy-- they should have pamphlets that tell you the brand name, ingredients, and nutritional info. Then compare with what's in the regular packages.
No matter where you get it, processed sandwich meats are just plain bad for you. Recent studies have shown that processed meats are linked to heart disease, while the same types of meat, minimally processed, do not. I've given up lunch meats entirely.
if you're buying deli meat from any of the main brands, they have nutrition info pamphlets available with all of their choices [and the do make lower sodium varieties]. so ask for the nutrition info at the counter [or google the brand your deli carries and nutrition info and get it online] and take that to the prepackaged section and get to comparing.
depending on what brand you buy from the counter, the deli meats and cheeses are normally less processed than the pre-packaged ones, which means better nutritional content. i buy the all-natural boar's head deli items from my grocer; i hate eating stuff like the packaged kraft cheeses...they seem so fake to me.
Sometimes the deli has more low sodium/less processed choices. I know I was able to find low sodium turkey and roast beef from the deli. The nutrition information is listed on the meats at the deli (the big packages) so maybe someone would be willing to let you see it? The more premium brands at the deli counter are normally the ones with the fewest ingredients.
Is there a big difference between deli counter meat and pre-packaged? I know you can get low-sodium pre-packaged but I didn't know if the deli counter made their own and maybe it had less additives (and sodium) than pre-packaged brands. When I buy the stuff at the deli it doesn't have nutrition information on it so it is hard to judge. Anyone?
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