Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Calorie Counts

McDonald’s recently announced that their U.S. restaurants would now show the calorie content of menu items.  This is a voluntary initiative being implemented ahead of possible regulation requiring chains with more than 20 locations to post calorie information that may take effect early next year.  

Will this unavoidable information and awareness encourage healthier choices by the U.S. population? The president of McDonald’s USA believes this strategy will help educate customers, but not alter choices.  Personally, I’m not sure what effect this initiative will have. I suppose I’m an optimist and a believer in the powers of knowledge and education.  It seems logical.  Essentially, these calorie counts are like a nutrition label.  Is there not evidence supporting the widespread regulation of such labels?  And if someone makes a choice or a change from even a Big Mac to a McChicken, saving 190 calories (and 13g of fat) isn’t that a move in the right direction, regardless of whether that decision was made based on knowledge or guilt?  Something to think about…

FYI- Here's a link to an article discussing this topic.

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