What's up with restaurant nutrition labeling?

photo taken by Kai Brinker

photo taken by Kai Brinker by Trish Unruh

In 2010, President Barack Obama signed the Affordable Care Act and part of that legislation requires restaurants with 20 or more locations to post nutrition information.

A number of restaurants already are posting calorie content on their menu boards but the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) will not issue the final regulations until the end of 2014. The FDA is proposing the new regulations will be effective six months later but that is up for discussion. Vending machine operators with more than 20 vending machines also will be required to post calorie information unless the information is visible while inside the machine.

For all of you who are trying to watch your fat, sodium, fiber and carbohydrate intake that information will be available upon request because of the Affordable Care Act. The latest Dietary Guidelines for Americans recommends 2,300 milligrams or less for everyone and for those of us ages 51 or older we should limit ourselves to 1,500 milligrams or less. If you have hypertension, diabetes, or chronic kidney disease you should also stay under 1,500 milligrams.

The Affordable Care Act will allow consumers to better track what they are eating when eating out and that's a good thing. Hopefully, more restaurants like McDonald's and Nathan's are moving ahead with the labeling system instead of waiting for federal regulations to kick in.

Tagged: LiveWell EatWell, restaurants, menu labeling


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