What the Word ‘Healthy’ Really Means

Finally, the Government Is Looking at What the Word ‘Healthy’ Really Means.

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For decades, consumers committed to a healthy lifestyle have been bombarded with countless so-called healthy brands, diets, and ingredients. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has finally stepped in to try to give consumers clarity and put a stop to mislabeling. The agency is asking for public input on a range of questions about how Americans define “healthy” in an effort to change the official meaning of the word for food labeling.

“As our understanding about nutrition has evolved, we need to make sure the definition for the ‘healthy’ labeling claim stays up to date,” Douglas Balentine, PhD. “For instance, the most recent public health recommendations now focus on type of fat, rather than amount of fat. They focus on added sugars, which consumers will see on the new Nutrition Facts label. And they focus on nutrients that consumers aren’t getting enough of, like vitamin D and potassium. By updating the definition, we hope more companies will use the ‘healthy’ claim as the basis for new product innovation and reformulation, providing consumers with a greater variety of ‘healthy’ choices in the marketplace.”

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