Here’s Your First Look at America’s New Food Label

The FDA just released its first major change to its nutritional labels in over twenty years. Here’s the new label you can expect to see on the back of your food…

Source: Here’s Your First Look at America’s New Food Label

It’s nice that the new label will be listing potassium, as there’s less of a deficiency issue with vitamins A and C.  As for vitamin D?

If you’re vitamin D deficient, drink milk. It’s fortified with Vitamin D mainly because kids in the frigid northern portions of the country weren’t getting enough sunlight during the winter. If you don’t like plain you can get chocolate milk mix with no added sugar. If you’re lactose intolerant, then take it as a sign that God hates you (and the rest of the 50-60% of the population that’s also lactose intolerant).

Nutrition Information Isn’t 100% Accurate…but Don’t Worry About It

Whether you’re a keen shopper, a health-conscious parent, or an athlete training for a specific fitness goal, chances are you’ve looked at a food label or two, right? You probably check the total Calories per serving of many foods you eat, taking comfort when you make clean choices. But have you ever wondered how the caloric value of your food is determined?

Source: How Accurate Are Calorie Counts?

This is to address the anal retentiveness that some people can develop with tracking calories. It’s important to know how much you’re taking in on a daily basis for weight management, but it’s just as important to avoid striving for perfection with it—just as long as you are close enough.

Some Food Labels Could Be Overestimating Calorie Counts

The method most commonly used to assess the number of calories in foods is flawed, overestimating the energy provided to the body by proteins, nuts and foods high in fiber by as much as 25 percent, some nutrition experts say.

“The amount of calories a person gets from protein and fiber are overstated,” said Geoffrey Livesey, the head of Independent Nutrition Logic, a nutrition consulting company in Britain, and a nutrition consultant to the United Nations. “This is especially misleading for those on a high-protein, high-fiber diet, or for diabetics” who must limit their intake of carbohydrates.

An adult aiming to take in 2,000 calories a day on a low-carbohydrate, high-protein diet may actually be consuming several hundred calories less, he and other experts said. Calorie estimates for junk foods, particularly processed carbohydrates, are more accurate.

Source: On Food Labels, Calorie Miscounts

Part of the problem is that calories are traditionally measured by burning food and measuring how much energy it takes to get the food to boil water (basically, it operates under the assumption humans are steam engines).

There’s been scientific papers for years pointing out that calorie counts are not accurate, and that even relying on them for any measure of health even when they are accurate may be completely irrelevant to human health.