25 April, 2016    #78

Nutrition Facts Label - Reactions!

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The Science on "Added Sugars"


Though not physiologically or metabolically different from naturally occurring sugars, added sugars are predominantly found in highly processed foods. Unlike fruits, vegetables, nuts, whole grains, and other nutrient-rich foods, processed foods typically do not promote satisfaction, even when fortified with vitamins and minerals, and can lead to increased eating. Excessive sugar intake does not typically occur from eating too much fruit with naturally occurring sugars, but rather from the consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages and processed foods that contain an abundance of added sugar.


Sugar consumption has long been known to cause tooth decay, and a growing body of scientific research now also finds evidence of a causal relationship between excessive sugar consumption and both weight gain and the rise in the incidence of major chronic metabolic diseases (e.g., Type 2 Diabetes, Cardiovascular Disease, High Triglycerides, Hypertension) collectively known as "The Metabolic Syndrome". Today, 25.8 million Americans are afflicted with Type 2 Diabetes, and 16 million suffer from Heart Disease.


Overconsumption of sugar also has been linked to Non-Alcoholic Fatty Liver Disease, which can lead to inflammation and scarring of the liver.  Approximately 31 percent of adults and 13 percent of children have this condition, which can progress to Non-Alcoholic Liver Cirrhosis, a life-threatening condition that can require a liver transplant.


Americans face the additional burden of rising health-care costs associated with treating these conditions.


Amending the Nutrition Facts Label (NFL) to list Added Sugars is supported by science-based guidance from leading health organizations including the American Academy of Pediatrics, American Heart Association, Institute of Medicine, and World Health Organization, all of which have advised limiting added sugar consumption.




Public Comments on the FDAs Proposal to Include Added Sugars on the Nutrition Facts Label


Of the 215 unique comments on added sugar, that together represent 35,507 submissions on the topic to the FDAs public comment period, 106 comments were in support of the change (the majority from public interest and health groups), 89 were in opposition (mostly from the food industry), and only 20 took no stance on the topic.



Food Industry Reactions


Since an estimated 74 percent of packaged foods contain Added Sugars, bringing attention to added sugars is likely seen as a threat to the bottom line ($$$) of many food industry entities, many of which opposed the FDAs proposed label change. Packaged food manufacturers (e.g., General Mills, Kellogg and Unilever) and their trade associations (e.g., the Grocery Manufacturers Association) have mounted an intense campaign to block the proposed change to the Nutrition Facts Label.


Instead of acknowledging the scientific evidence linking Added Sugars to health problems, food industry comments to the FDA repeatedly oppose the New Label while casting doubt on the underling scientific evidence. These actions undermine measures that would benefit public health.


However, not all is lost!  Nestle, Mars and KIND (LLC) are all in favor of the New Nutrition Label.



Trax News Comments


Let's face it, far too many of us are addicted to food with too much SALT, SUGAR & BAD FATS.  Burgers, Fries, Pizza, Processed Foods, Ice Cream, Candy, Alcohol, Sugar Drinks and Diet Drinks are literally killing us.  50 years ago these foods were considered treats and were only consumed intermittently on special occasions, or not at all.


We are what we eat, and what we eat must be understood if we are to regain and maintain health through healthier ways.  Please read the Nutrition Facts Labels when you shop, and hopefully the "light will go on" and change your dietary lifestyle ... it's a matter of "YOUR LIFE".



This concludes our Nutrition Facts Label series.  We encourage you to read Nutrition Facts Labels and to invest wisely in dietary decisions for yourself and the ones your love.



Thanks for Reading Trax News!


Mike Kohut, President, DDMS




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