The New Nutritional Facts Label
“You are what you eat” may be a gross oversimplification, but it’s also a reminder to pay more attention to what we put into our bodies. For health-conscious consumers, there’s no faster or more convenient way to find out what we’re eating than checking the nutrition facts label on most foods.
At a glance, labels outline the most important information about the products we find at the grocery store. Soon, it may become even easier to plan our meals, thanks to changes in the way this information is presented.
Beginning January 1, 2020, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration will begin enforcing new requirements for information displayed on food packaging. These changes are intended to provide consumers with more useful information about the food products they purchase.
Serving sizes will be adjusted to more accurately represent the actual eating habits of the average American. This includes an adjustment to the caloric intake of a single serving. A new addition to the label is a line detailing the amount of sugar added during processing or packaging.
One figure that has been removed is the amount of “Calories From Fat.” This reflects research indicating that the type of dietary fat is more important than the amount. Information on vitamins A and C has been replaced with the amount of vitamin D and potassium.
This is because most Americans receive enough of the former and an insufficient amount of the latter. Finally, a new footnote contains updated context for the “% Daily Value” data to explain its meaning with greater accuracy.
Living a healthier lifestyle begins with watching what we eat. For more information about the revised Nutrition Facts label and how it can help you manage your caloric and nutritional intake, see the accompanying infographic.
John Hinchey is VP of Sales for Westfalia Technologies, Inc., a leading provider of logistics solutions for plants, warehouses and distribution centers. He has more than 20 years of experience in manufacturing and warehouse automation.
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