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How to play

The goal of the game is to get all the cards. The shuffled cards are distributed evenly, unused cards are put aside. Everyone keeps their cards stacked so that only the top card is visible.


The youngest person starts and selects any food measure on the card, e.g. “protein 110”, “salt 65”, etc. The others tell the value of the same measure printed on their top cards. The person with the best value wins all cards of the round and adds them to the bottom of their stack.


For the green "More is better" measures the highest number wins. For the red "Less is better" the lowest number wins. If more than one of the top cards show the same number for the chosen measure, then the next card of everyone’s stack is viewed. The player with the best value of the same measure on the next card wins the previously undecided cards. People with no card left have to drop out.

About the cards

All cards have the same layout and each shows one type of food. The numbers give eight characteristics of the respective food.


There are three of which you want to get as much as possible ("more is better"). Here, 100 means that you achieve the required amount per calorie for the dimension. When you eat food above 100 you compensate for the calories you get from foods below 100. 


Of the other five, you want as little as possible ("less is better"). Here you should stay below 100 – and if you go above it you need to compensate with other foods, accordingly.


As a result, all foods are very easy to compare and the numbers are independent of the portion size and water content of the food.



Target is 60-65g for every 2000 calories.


Minerals / Vitamins
Average coverage of recommended intake for 11 Minerals and 14 Vitamins.


Target is 30g for every 2000 calories.

Target is 5g salt for every 2000 calories.

Saturated fat
Target is 10% of calories.

Added sugar
Target is 10% of calories. Naturally contained sugar (e.g. in fruits) is not counted.

Average cost per calorie for this type of food. 100 is an average value per calorie across all food types. This makes comparing with other foods easier. We assume self-prepared meals, ingredients bought at regular prices, using mostly local produce and bulk shopping for the week.

Carbon Footprint
This is the relative amount of CO2 created by production, transport, storage and preparation of the food. This is a rough approach to compare types of food (e.g. fruits vs. beef). 100 equals 3g CO2 per calorie. This is roughly the footprint vegetables have. Cereals have half that footprint and beef has five times that.


Green tick mark: food scores well for this dimension
The food achieves or over-achieves the target value for the respective dimension. For “more is better” it is 100 or more, for “less is better”  it is 100 or less. The more its exceeds the target the more it can compensate for foods worse in this dimension.

Yellow circle: food scores slightly below target for this dimension

This food is more or less neutral for the respective dimension. It can be up to 15% worse than the target value. If you consume many calories of the respective food you should compensate also for those dimensions.

Red cross: food scores not well for this dimension

This food needs to be compensated by “good” food for this dimension. The more the deviation and calories consumed the more it needs to be compensated. Therefore, you should try to minimize consumption of foods with multiple red marks.



More playig options

1. VARIANTS (10-15 min)

  • Before the measure for the current round is chosen, all players have to announce the name of their food card. This gives the person choosing the measure a better chance of choosing the right one to win.

  • Before the measure is selected one of the measures can be "blocked" by the person left to the one asking for the measures. This gives the person not choosing the measure a better chance to win the round.

​2. QUARTET (5-10 min)

The goal of the game is to get as many of the eight quartets (= set of four cards) as possible. The cards of each same-colored category of food cards, all of which are marked with the same letter, belong to a quartet. For example, all breakfast cards A1, A2, A3, and A4 are a quartet.

First, all cards are distributed as evenly as possible among up to 4 players. The youngest person selects any measure, e.g. “Protein” or “Added sugar”. The person to the left decides which quartet to play in the round, e.g. "A, Breakfast". Everyone compares their best card of the quartet for the selected measure. The person who has the breakfast card with the best value for the chosen measure wins the entire quartet and puts it visibly on the table (as a trophy). If more than one person has the same best value for the measure, everyone takes their cards back for that quartet. Then, the same person who selected the last measure now chooses a different measure. The next person on the left (again) chooses the quartet to play in this round, hopefully, this time with a winner.


Whoever wins the round chooses the next measure afterward, e.g. "Price". Then, the person to the left decides which quartet will be played in the round. This continues until all cards have been won.

3. QUIZ (10-15 min)

The goal of the game is to win as many cards as possible. The shuffled deck of all cards is placed on the table.


The youngest person draws two cards, names the two foods, and asks the person to the left a question based on the characteristics printed on the card. This question should single out one of the two cards. Example questions are

  • "Which food has the higher protein content?" or

  • "Which food has no red cross?" or

  • "Which food has a salt value of 86?"


It is important that the question describes one and only one of the two drawn cards. The person on the left answers the question and wins the correctly chosen card with a correct answer. The other card goes back to the bottom of the stack. If the question is answered incorrectly, both cards go back to the bottom of the stack. After that, the roles will change. The person who just answered the question will ask the next question. The person to the left will answer. This continues until all cards have been won.

4. QUIZ VARIANT (10-15 min)

Everyone joins the guess at the same time by lifting their arms. The left arm chooses the first mentioned food card, the right arm selects the second food. Everyone guessing right gets a point.

5. EXPERT (10-15 min)

The goal is to get all the food cards. Distribute the shuffled cards evenly among two to four players. Put away any surplus cards. Everyone looks through their cards for one minute to determine the best strategy.


You will play the 10 rounds as listed below. Everyone plays one card per round from their initial stack. The person playing the card with the best value for this round’s question gets all played cards of that round. Won cards go on a separate stack, those cannot be used for responding to the 10 questions. If more than one card shows the best value in one round, then everyone will get their own card to put it on the separate “won” stack. Also, this card cannot be played again in a later round.


The sequence of the 10 rounds:

  1. Highest protein

  2. Lowest salt

  3. Most minerals and vitamins

  4. Least saturated fats

  5. Cheapest food

  6. Minimal environmental impact

  7. Lowest added sugar

  8. Highest percentage of fiber

  9. Card with the most green check marks

  10. Card with the fewest red crosses

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