Neurotics, Rejoice: FDA to Make Nutrition Labels Bigger and Better


Ever spent time looking for the calories listed on your food at the grocery store? I have and it’s not fun, but someone told the Food and Drug Administration about my struggle and they’re considering some “revisions.” Yay.

The FDA says 20 years ago Americans were obsessed with their fat intake, but now it’s all about calories. As such, product labels should work with us, instead of confusing us with measuring increments like “grams,” which no one uses stateside except drug dealers.

“There’s a feeling that nutrition labels haven’t been as effective as they should be,” says Michael Jacobson of the Center for Science in the Public Interest. “When you look at the label, there are roughly two dozen numbers of substances that people aren’t intuitively familiar with.”
For example, he says, most of the nutrients are listed in grams, the metric system’s basic unit of mass. Jacobson says people don’t really understand what a gram is.

To be fair, if people were that curious about what a “gram” represented, they could Google it, but I digress. Health advocates are hoping the revisions will include more obvious calorie counts on the front of packages and include the actual percentage of whole wheat in food since so many claim to be “whole wheat” but in fact are not.

Serving sizes that coincide with the calorie listing is another hopeful change — like drinking an Odwalla juice and thinking you’re doing well because it’s only like 200 calories, until you realize that number was only for half the bottle and you’ve finished the whole thing. Just me? Oh.

Save us from ourselves, FDA.

Image via Gts/Shutterstock.

Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
Share Tweet Submit Pin