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Restaurant Nutritional Labeling May Not Help Combat Obesity

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Restaurant Nutritional Labeling May Not Help Combat Obesity

Many states and restaurants nationwide have enacted legislation to include nutrition labeling on menus. These efforts aim to combat obesity and help Americans make more informed meal choices. However, the results of these efforts haven't been as positive as lawmakers may have hoped.

New York City first began labeling menus in 2008, yet it still seems waiting to take hold. More than half of young consumers at fast-food restaurants notice the nutrition facts, but only 9 percent actually let the information impact their decisions, according to WNYC.

"In Washington state, full service restaurants in Pierce County added nutrition information to their menus," wrote Jennifer Gibson for the website BrainBlogger.

"Overall, each post-labeling entrée contained 15 fewer calories, 1.5 fewer fat grams and 45 fewer milligrams of sodium on average than pre-labeling entrees. In total, 71 percent of restaurant-goers noticed the information on the menu, but only 20 percent used this information to choose a lower calorie option, while 16 percent chose a lower fat option," she added.

While labeling may seem to be a wise strategy, it still seems that Americans are going to eat what they want, when they want it.