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"Consumers want to know what’s in their food": Statement on Nutrition Facts Panel

May 20, 2016

STATEMENT FROM LYNN SILVER, MD, MPH, SENIOR ADVISOR AT THE PUBLIC HEALTH INSTITUTE AND DIRECTOR OF CALIFORNIA PROJECT LEAN

 

"The Public Health Institute and PHI’s California Project LEAN applaud today’s announcement by the FDA and First Lady Michelle Obama of changes in the Nutrition Facts Panels.

 

"The new format will make it easier for consumers to find and interpret information, by more prominently highlighting calorie counts and servings per container. New, more realistic serving sizes will more closely match how much people really eat. It will also require information on potassium--important for maintaining normal blood pressure in conjunction with keeping salt lower--as well as Vitamin D.

 

"The biggest boon to consumers will be the ability to quickly understand how much sugar has been added to products. This allows consumers to screen for healthier naturally occurring sugars, such as in milk products, versus unhealthy added sugars such as in sodas and processed foods. We are disappointed, still, that the FDA is expressing added sugar in grams rather than teaspoons, which would have been easier for consumers to understand, and which many organizations supported.

 

"Consumers want to know what’s in their food and how it contributes or detracts from their health. Today’s announcement from the FDA is a major step in giving consumers the power and knowledge to make the best decisions for themselves and their families."