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NewsBites August 2016 Issue

Rethinking "Healthy" Definition

Is an avocado healthier than a sugary bowl of raisin bran? Not according to the FDA's labeling rules for "healthy" foods, which the agency recently announced it would review. Experts and many in the food industry say those rules, set in 1994, haven't kept up with the changes in scientific thinking about fats and added sugar. Current guidelines factor in limits on not only saturated fat but total fat (including the healthy unsaturated fats in avocados or nuts) and cholesterol, as well as sodium. Foods with beneficial nutrients, such as iron or fiber, might earn a "healthy" label even if high in added sugar (which would now be labeled separately). The FDA review, which will include a public comment period, could take more than a year.

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