Why new food labels will help in some ways, but not others — 3 Comments

  1. I agree with the dietitian on some things. And disagree on some.

    Good things: Calories bigger. Number of servings per container bigger.

    Bad things: Putting the %DV on the left seems strange. We normally read left to right, and typically we are looking for a certain item … so first seeing a list of percentages is not helpful.

    I disagree with the dietitian about some serving sizes being increased. If people do typically eat one bagel, then that should be the serving size. And if people typically eat 1 cup of ice cream, that should be reflected on the label. putting small serving sizes with associated smaller caloric amounts actually hides the realistic impact of eating that food item.

    I also think that removing the ‘calories from fat’ is a step in the wrong direction. Let’s say that there is a candy who gets 90% of its calories from fat, but the serving size is small. It has 10 grams of fat and 2 grams of sugar. 98 calories. 90 out of 98 are from fat! But the new label will only show that the fat content is 15% of DV. Some people will think: “wow, this is diet food. only 100 calories per serving and it is low fat too … look only 15%DV for fat”

  2. I find that nutrition-facts labels used in USA can easily be confusing when compared to same labels used in Europe where the decimal system applies. With the decimal system, things are clear at a glance: calories intake are plainly explained in 100 grams and the content of the food package is reported in Kg unit of weight. Mineral and vitamins facts and other nutritional information are added following. Anybody wanting to be precise in measuring calories intake can at home easily measure the desired quantity on her/his weighing scale sparing herself/himself the trouble of going through rather complicated calculation about “ servings, serving size, a cup being equal a serving size which in turn is worth 2,3,4 ounces let alone the misinformation (deliberate, maybe) of the %MD which should be relative to diets that should be different to different people. I dare say, with all due respect that the decimal system could be much easier for people in general to handle and gain at a glance information looking at a food label. Maybe the American Food Industry may disagree with my opinion.