A recent government study said more than half of all Americans take dietary supplements, which in my opinion is surprisingly high, considering these pills and powders aren’t regulated like drugs but like foods.
The Dietary Supplement Health and Education Act (DSHEA) of 1994 defined “dietary supplement” (to include vitamins, minerals, botanicals and other ingredients) and ruled that supplements would be regulated like foods. This exempted companies from having to prove the safety or efficacy of their products—entirely reasonable, given that the nutrients come from natural foods, say advocates. The law also permitted supplement makers to use several kinds of marketing claims (some that don’t require FDA approval), including structure/function statements, which describe how a nutrient is intended to affect the body.
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With Earth Day just around the corner (April 22), eco-consciousness is on a lot of people’s minds. At EatingWell, we realize that for many of us eco-friendly choices are a growing concern year-round, particularly when it comes to what we eat. Here are 5 tips to help you green up your diet that you can use all year long.
1. Buy organic: Choosing organic foods may reduce carbon dioxide emissions by up to 68 percent. That said, going all organic all the time can take a toll on your wallet. If you also buy organic because you’re concerned about your personal health, consider forgoing organic if/when you buy these 15 fruits and vegetables (they make up the Environmental Working Group’s “Clean 15” list as least likely to be contaminated with pesticide residues): onions, corn, pineapple, avocado, asparagus,...read full post »
I’ve always been a breakfast eater. It gives me a much-needed energy boost—along with a cup of coffee, of course—and it helps me from being so famished at lunch that I end up overeating.
But eating a morning meal is also a healthy habit if you’re watching your weight. Here’s why: research shows that regular breakfast eaters tend to be leaner and dieters are more successful at losing weight—and keeping it off—when they eat breakfast. What’s more, people who typically eat breakfast also get more fiber (more on why this is important later), calcium, vitamins A and C, riboflavin, zinc and iron—and less fat...read full post »
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A new study, published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Association, looked at how much consumers actually pay attention to Nutrition Facts labels on food products.
When the study participants were asked about their label-reading habits, many said they read the nutrition facts: for example, 33 percent reported “almost always” reading the calorie content. (The number of people who reported reading other components of the label, such as fat and sugar content, was lower.) But when the researchers put the study participants to the test with an eye-tracking device, those who truly read the Nutrition Facts label was much lower (only 9% looked at calorie counts, for example)—and even when consumers did examine the nutrition information, very few assessed every component of the label.
As a dietitian and nutrition...read full post »