When it comes to healthful eating, it seems, what’s good for you today might not be what’s good for you tomorrow. In an effort to convey the latest in nutrition science, and to make information easier to understand, the FDA is proposing updates to the Nutrition Facts label. The only major change to the label since its introduction in1993 was the addition in 2006 of trans fat content.
The label is intended to enable consumers to make informed choices in the hope they will opt to eat healthfully. If the proposed changes are adopted, expect the newly designed labels to include:
- updated serving size requirements
- the percent daily value (%DV) for added sugars on packaged foods in addition to that existing information for sodium and certain fats
- updated daily values for sodium, dietary fiber and vitamin D
- manufacturer declarations of the amount of potassium and vitamin D as “nutrients of public health significance”
- calcium and iron amounts
- vitamins A and C if manufacturers voluntarily offer them
- total, saturated and trans fat content remains, but not calories from fat because research shows the type of fat is more important than the amount
- different footnote information to clarify the percent daily value concept.
The public may comment on the proposed changes until Sept. 25. You may review the proposal, read FAQs and offer your input here. For general guidance on healthful eating, see Patrick’s newsletter, “Exposing Bad Food Advice, and Looking at What’s Good for You.”