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Today, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration has proposed updated standards for when food packages can carry a “healthy” nutrient content claim. This proposed rule aligns the definition of “healthy” claims with current nutritional science, updated Nutrition Facts labels, and current Dietary Guidelines for Americans.

Over 80% of people in the US don’t eat enough vegetables, fruits and dairy. And most people eat too much sugar, saturated fat, and sodium. The proposed rule is part of the agency’s ongoing effort to help consumers improve their nutrition and eating patterns to reduce the burden of chronic disease and improve health equity.

The proposed rule will support the White House Conference on Hunger, Nutrition, and Health, as well as End Hunger, Improve Nutrition and Physical Activity, Reduce Diet-Related Diseases, and Close the Inequality Gap by 2030.

“Nutrition is key to improving the health of our nation,” said HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra. “A healthy diet can lower your risk of chronic disease. But too many people may not know what healthy food is. It will help improve health outcomes, address health disparities and save lives.”

To better explain how all the nutrients in different food groups contribute and work synergistically to create healthy eating patterns and improve health, the proposed rule states: Update definition of “healthy” claims. Under the proposed definition of an updated “healthy” claim, which is based on current nutritional science, is part of a healthy eating pattern and Eat more foods than the dietary guidelines recommend, including nuts and seeds, fatty fish (such as salmon), and certain oils and water.

“Diet-related chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes are the leading causes of death and disability in the United States, disproportionately affecting racial and ethnic minority groups,” the FDA said. Commissioner Robert M. Califf, MD said. This is an important step in achieving many nutrition-related priorities, including informing consumers to make healthier diet choices and establish healthy eating habits early. is. It can also lead to a healthier food supply. ”

Under the proposed definition, to bear the “healthy” label on food packaging, a product must:

  • Contains a certain amount of food from at least one of the food groups or subgroups (fruits, vegetables, dairy, etc.) recommended in dietary guidelines.
  • Observe specific restrictions for certain nutrients, such as saturated fat, sodium, and added sugars. Restriction thresholds are based on percent daily value (DV) for nutrients and vary by food and food group. The sodium limit is 10% of DV per serving (230 milligrams per serving).

For example, cereals should contain 3/4 ounces of whole grains, 1 gram or less saturated fat, 230 milligrams of sodium, and 2.5 grams or less of added sugars.

“Healthy eating patterns are associated with improved health, but most people’s eating patterns are not consistent with current dietary recommendations,” said Susan Mayne, director of the FDA Center for Food Safety and Applied Nutrition. says Dr. “In addition to today’s actions, we will advance many FDA initiatives and continue to explore new ways to coordinate, leverage and scale the important work underway across the nutrition ecosystem to improve the way people eat. and have a significant impact on the health of the present and future generations.”

In addition to empowering consumers, adopting the updated definition will help some manufacturers if they reconfigure (e.g., add vegetables or whole grains to meet standards). Or if we develop a product that meets the updated definition, it could help promote a healthier food supply.

Consumers have long had an interest in finding ways to more easily identify healthy foods, so the FDA also requires manufacturers to demonstrate that their products meet “healthy” labeling standards. I am in the process of researching and investigating the development of symbols that can be used. The agency recognizes that consumers may be busy while shopping and looking for quick ways to find and select healthy products. Updated “healthy” claims and potential symbols serve as quick signals to help consumers more easily identify healthier food choices.

The FDA is participating in today’s White House conference on Hunger, Nutrition, and Health to develop a national strategy to improve nutrition and health and make healthy choices accessible to all consumers. We will continue to take steps to help. Specifically, the agency remains committed to continuing the supply of healthier foods through recently released guidance to reduce sodium in processed, packaged and prepared foods. Providing consumers with accessible nutritional information about the foods they eat. and to provide industry with recommendations on how to use dietary guidance statements on food labeling. Future planned actions include:

  • We develop front-of-package (FOP) labeling systems to quickly and easily communicate nutritional information to help consumers make healthier decisions.
  • Make nutritional information easily available when shopping for groceries online.
  • Facilitate the reduction of sodium content of foods in the food supply. This includes issuing revised, lower, voluntary sodium reduction targets for industry.
  • Hold a public meeting on future steps the federal government can take to help reduce additional sugar consumption.
  • Additional education and outreach efforts to ensure parents and caregivers are aware of the latest recommendations for healthy eating for young children and take steps to reduce exposure to toxic ingredients in food to announce.

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FDA, an agency within the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, ensures the safety, efficacy, and security of human and veterinary drugs, vaccines, and other biological products and medical devices for human use. to protect public health. This agency is also responsible for the regulation of our country’s food supply, cosmetics, dietary supplements, the safety and security of products that emit electronic radiation, and tobacco products.