Food labels will change to make your choices easier

Food labels will change to make your choices easier

CLEVELAND, OH (WOIO) - Last year, the Food and Drug Administration let food manufacturers know they needed to make some changes to their food labels.

One of the first changes you will notice is bolder text.

Consumers will also see serving sizes that more accurately reflect what they actually eat - not just what they should be eating.

"One of the common complaints from consumers has been, you know, when you get a 20 ounce soda, it will say there are 2.5 servings. So, you'll pick it up and say, 'oh this is only 80 calories,' but you forget to multiply by 2.5. So, one of the changes is that food manufacturers have to make the serving size what we actually eat," said Karen Kawolics, a registered dietitian and fitness expert.

Expect to see dual column labels.

"A pint of ice cream will have a label if you ate one serving, which would be 3/4's cup. What would it be if I ate the whole thing, which sometimes people do, so it just creates some awareness. So, you don't have to do the math. When you are having that stress eating moment, you are probably not going to want to be doing any math. So you can look at the product and say, 'do I really want to eat this?" added Kawolics.

There will be a section on label called total sugars. Underneath that heading there will be a column that says added sugars.

"What this does is it allows consumers to distinguish between what is a naturally occurring sugar such as in milk and fruit - the kind we want to take into our body - and what is an added sugar," said Kawolics.

Health experts say that our "calories from sugar," should not be more than 10 percent of our daily calories.

"Having this column that says added sugars we can become more aware and compare products and pick one that has less added sugar," said Kawolics.

Another change you may notice: vitamins A and C will be taken off the label. Vitamin D and Potassium will now be listed, and that's because research has shown that many Americans are low on Vitamin D and Potassium.

Large manufacturers have until 2018 to make the changes required by the FDA. Smaller manufacturers have an extra year to come into compliance.

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