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FDA Approves Health Claim for Brown Rice
Date:5/9/2008

Confirms popular whole grain may provide protection against heart disease

and certain cancers

ARLINGTON, Va., May 8 /PRNewswire/ -- Brown rice, a 100 percent whole grain food, joins the recognized ranks of healthful whole grains, according to an announcement this week from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) that will allow brown rice food labels to bear the whole grain health claim. This will enable consumers to easily identify brown rice as a food to help them increase whole grain consumption and reduce their risk of heart disease and certain cancers.

Brown rice and other whole grain foods are widely recommended to consumers by the public health community including the American Heart Association, American Cancer Society and the 2005 Dietary Guidelines for Americans for their protective effects against heart disease and certain cancers. In fact, the Dietary Guidelines recommend "making half of all grain servings whole," or three daily whole grain servings in a standard 2,000-calorie reference diet. Still, data from a recent consumer survey conducted by EatingWell magazine and the USA Rice Federation show that the majority of Americans (65 percent) are not meeting their whole grains quota(1).

Consumers can now be on the lookout for brown rice labeled with the FDA whole grain health claim: "Diets rich in whole grain foods and other plant foods and low in total fat, saturated fat and cholesterol may reduce the risk of heart disease and some cancers."

FDA's action explicitly extends an existing health claim to include whole grain rice. For the first time, FDA states that all single ingredient whole grain foods qualify for the claim regardless of whether they meet the requirement for a minimum level of dietary fiber, as long as they meet the other general health claim requirements. The dietary fiber requirement was established in 1999 in order to monitor compliance with the claim. FDA now states that
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SOURCE USA Rice Federation
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