New Nutrition Facts Label – The Breakdown
Nutrition Label – The Facts
Most food manufactures have until July 26th 2018 to comply with the changes made by the FDA. These changes were made to reflect new scientific information, including the link between diet and chronic diseases such as obesity and heart disease. The new label will hopefully make it easier for consumers to make informed choices about the types and amounts of foods they choose to eat.
Changes to the Nutrition Facts Label
Most of the changes may not standout or even recognizable to anyone who doesn’t spend hours a day staring at a nutrition label. The changes:
- Added sugars and % DV for added sugars have been added to the label.
- Added sugars in grams per serving will be on the label as follows “Includes ____ g added sugars”. This will be indented below the previously stated Total Sugars label. This will help those consumers who are trying to stay below the dietary guidelines of no more than 10% of total calories from added sugars.
- Calcium and iron will still be required on the new label, the nutrients of public health significance will be labeled in the following order: vitamin D, calcium, iron, and potassium, along with the actual gram amount and % DV.
- When any other voluntary vitamin and mineral is declared it also must be labeled in actual amounts along with the % DV, instead of the current labeling of only the % DV. Again, this will help those who are looking to achieve a certain amount in grams of that specific nutrient.
Vitamin D & Potassium are replacing Vitamin A and Vitamin C as nutrients that are mandated by the FDA to be listed on the label. Why? Most American diets consist of foods that are high in both vitamins A and C while the latest research shows that the real concern is over possible deficiencies in Vitamin D and potassium. Potassium, specifically, is an underrated nutrient that is beneficial in helping to reduce the risk of high blood pressure.
The addition of potassium to the food label will help consumers know how much of this important mineral is in foods, and help to identify foods higher in potassium. Food manufactures are still able to list the % DV of vitamins A & C but it is no longer mandatory under the new FDA label rule.
Servings size finally gets a much needed face lift! No longer will serving sizes be stated in amounts and volumes that most of us can’t associate with such as grams or mL but now in general terms such as 1 cup per serving. The new label will lists serving size as what is typically eaten in one sitting. This will help consumers by helping to eliminate the need to multiply several servings and daily value percentages to know how much has been consumed.
The new label will no longer have the “calories from fat” header which goes along with the most recent research that states fat in total is as important of an indicator on total health as is the type of fat. In this case the healthy fats would be those of mono and poly unsaturated fats.
So with these changes the new label should make it that much easier for consumers to know and understand the nutrient composition of the foods they are choosing to eat. This new label should help those who are trying to stay within their calorie goal, vitamin and mineral recommendation, and or other nutrients such as carbohydrates and grams of fat. As always if you or anyone you know has questions about the label and or would like to talk about a proper nutrition plan for yourself to kick start that lifestyle change give us a call at (803) 200 – 2506 or schedule a FREE No Obligation Consultation with one of our Registered Dietitians today!
Sean Vander Veer RD, LD, CPT
Elite Nutrition & Performance