• November 21, 2014

Food labels to match eating habits

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Posted: Wednesday, March 5, 2014 4:30 am

Last week, the government unveiled its proposal for nutrition labels to more accurately reflect the larger portion sizes most people consume.

According to news reports, the proposal would make calorie counts on labels more prominent so people are more aware of what they’re consuming.

For calorie counters like me, the changes can’t arrive soon enough.

Comparing labels when shopping and adding calories when doling out servings at home will become a lot easier with the proposed labels.

The labels also will be required to list any sugars that are added by manufacturers. Since I try to avoid sugar, especially when it isn’t naturally occurring in a certain food, the new labels will make it easier to spot.

A desire to help consumers understand how many calories they eat is driving the first changes proposed by the Food and Drug Administration in about two decades. The FDA said that, by law, serving sizes must be based on actual consumption, not some ideal.

Getting realistic about what we eat is long overdue. The downside is that it will take two or three years for the changes to take effect.

The FDA will take comments on the proposal for 90 days, and a final rule could take another year. Once it’s final, the agency proposed giving industry two years to comply.

Implementation can’t come soon enough. Hopefully, it will help people like me better manage our weight and health and make strides against the obesity epidemic in our country.

Now, the government just needs to create a label that forces me to get on the treadmill 30 minutes a day. Then I’d be all set for better health.

M. Clare Haefner enjoys cooking for family and friends. Contact her at chaefner@kdhnews.com or 254-501-7551.

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