"When you compare the average intake with the recommended daily intake, these consumers purchased almost all their calories, and more than the recommended sodium and saturated fat in just one meal," said Beth Leonberg, an assistant clinical professor and director of the didactic program in dietetics in Drexel's College of Nursing and Health Professions, who co-authored the study. "In order to not exceed recommended intakes for the day, most adults should consume fewer than 750 calories, 750 milligrams of sodium and 8 grams of saturated fat in a single meal."
The authors concluded that current efforts don't go far enough to help consumers to eat sensibly and to encourage portion control. Educating consumers about menu labeling may further increase the small observed impact on healthier consumer choices.
"We also need to pursue approaches that make the healthy choice the default," said Giridhar Mallya, MD, director of policy and planning for the Philadelphia Department of Public Health and a co-author of the study. "This might include product reformulation, promoting healthier options on menus, and offering smaller portion sizes."
|Contact: Rachel Ewing|