The majority of Americans want to see calories and other nutrition information added to menus and menu boards, according to a new report out this month by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF).
Evidence that menu labeling leads to a reduction in calories when dining out is mixed, but the report does suggest that seeing posted calories may lead to consumers eating fewer calories daily, even after they leave the restaurant
Building on its 2008 research report, this report reviews nearly fifty new studies exploring consumer support for menu labeling as well as the effects of labeling on consumer awareness, purchase intentions and actual food purchasing.
Studies that were conducted in controlled settings or that relied on survey data were given less weight in the report as they may not reflect what happens in the real world. The studies that were conducted using real-life restaurant scenarios offered mixed results in terms of the effect of labeling on what we choose to order and how many calories we consume when eating out. Continue reading
The American Medical Association (AMA) thinks so.
Earlier this week, at their annual meeting, they announced they were officially recognizing obesity as a disease. It’s a move that will have far-reaching effects on the American healthcare system, in that it will raise awareness and spur action on the part of physicians, who are historically reluctant to discuss weight with their patients. It may also encourage more insurers to cover obesity treatment and, hopefully, prevention efforts.
Much of the attention surrounding this new classification has focused on semantic issues (what is a disease, anyway, and how does it differ from a condition or disorder?) and on the fact that the most widely-used measure of obesity, the Body Mass Index or BMI, is an imperfect one. Continue reading
Cancer is American’s number one health concern, according to AICR surveys. Yet, a new report shows that as a nation we are shockingly slow to make and support lifestyle changes that could prevent about one-half of all cancer cases – and the accompanying cost, loss and suffering – in the United States.
The Cancer Prevention & Early Detection Facts & Figures (CPED) 2013 from the American Cancer Society reports on trends for tobacco use, obesity, diet, physical activity and screening. Although there’s a slowing in the increase of overweight and obesity, over 2/3 of Americans still fall into this category.
The science is clear: by staying lean, eating a healthful plant-based diet and being physically active Americans could prevent 1/3 – or about 400,000 cases – of the most common cancers every year. Just about every American recognizes that tobacco use and too much sun are cancer risks, but many Americans are not aware of the link between obesity and cancer. In fact, if everyone were a healthy weight, we could prevent over 116,000 cases of cancer every year. Continue reading