by Medindia Content Team on  September 27, 2006 at 3:09 PM Diet & Nutrition News
Are Food Labels Intelligible?
New York - To gauge the efficacy of food labels and test if it meets the intended purpose, researchers at the Vanderbilt University for Health Services embarked on a survey involving 200 primary care patients. The survey revealed, despite the enduring habit of reading food-labels, as a prelude to making a purchase, most consumers did not assimilate the information. The pointers that consumers often check on food labels would most certainly hover around fat, calorie and sugar content of the food product.

The results of an online poll of 2,706 adults, a worthy effort by Harris Interactive and the Wall Street Journal, has revealed that 51 percent of Americans are pretty sure to read food labels , which they believe helps them make an informed choice. 17% were frank enough to accept that they never really bothered to read food labels.

Researchers are of the opinion that the very purpose of food labels is defeated if consumers do not comprehend the labels. The survey also revealed those who were not very educated and just about average at numerical ability, showed difficulties in understanding the labels. This is especially bad for the overweight lot, for whom it is crucial to understand the contents of the food items, in order to make a healthy pick.

Source: Medindia

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