Mandatory posting of calorie counts at chain restaurants good for all

Ebony Scott
May 10, 2018

That's because the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) this week (May 7) chose to move forward with an Obama-era food labeling rule (pdf) that requires restaurants, grocery, and convenience stores with 20 or more locations to post calorie counts for standard menu items.

It's one of the last items to be implemented of the 2010 Affordable Care Act.

Although the rule went into effect on May 7, the Washington Post reports that the FDA will not be enforcing penalties against establishments who have not posted calorie counts until 2019.

"By having information about the calories in food, you can make more informed decisions about the food you eat - decisions that can help improve your overall health and that of your family", the FDA said.

Now that the Food and Drug Administration is requiring all chain restaurants with at least 20 locations to include calorie counts on their menus, it's worth revisiting the question: Do they actually help fight obesity? I think we need to own it.

"However, there is evidence that labels do encourage lower energy purchases in other settings such as coffee chains, full-service restaurants, or certain fast-food restaurants".

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John Cortinas knows exactly how many calories he's getting. Researchers found that if calories were posted before menu items, rather than after them, diners would be more likely to eat less.

But some food industry groups and retailers say they still don't have all the answers and worry the rules will place an undue burden on shop owners. That's why she makes sure to put healthy options on her menu. She noted that increased transparency has become necessary now that eating out is a regular habit for consumers and not an occasional treat.

Gottlieb said consumers now eat and drink about one-third of their calories away from home. "But over a year, based on that sort of reduction, you could end up consuming 10,000 to 20,000 fewer calories, making you three to five pounds slimmer".

The FDA mandated all large chain restaurants to list calories on all menus and menu boards, along with nutritional information, like fat and sodium levels.

Several restaurant chains that included Burger King, McDonald's, Panera Bread and Taco Bell have listed their calorie information for several years, but some, including the Melting Pot and Legal Sea Food, have not added the new information yet.

One unidentified man told NBC News that he ate what he wanted, regardless of how many calories were in the meal.

Other reports by GizPress

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