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Are You Label-Able?

by Belinda O’Connell, MS, RD, CDE, and Laura Hieronymus, MSEd, APRN, BC-ADM, CDE

The FDA also regulates the use of health- or disease-related claims on food labels. A health claim is a statement about the role of a specific nutrient in maintaining health or preventing disease. Since these statements are commonly used by consumers to help them select more healthful foods, only health claims approved by the FDA are allowed on food labels. Foods that carry a health-related claim are required to contain specified levels of nutrients believed to be adequate to bring about the health result described in the claim. (See “Health Claims” for a list of these claims.)

You be the judge
By regulating what and how information is presented on food labels, the FDA has made following a balanced, healthy diet a much more manageable feat. Although individual dietary needs also have to be taken into account, the information on food labels can serve as a valuable tool in helping to determine what to eat and how much of it to eat at a time. So the next time you’re at the grocery store, just remember — you can judge a food by its label.

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Also in this article:
for Sample Food Labels, Calculating Carbohydrate Choices, Personalizing the Percent Daily Value, Health Claims, and Label Terms



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Statements and opinions expressed on this Web site are those of the authors and not necessarily those of the publishers or advertisers. The information provided on this Web site should not be construed as medical instruction. Consult appropriate health-care professionals before taking action based on this information.



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