Calorie Advice on Menus Might Not Help People Eat Better

Customers may resist doing the math with every meal, study author says

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"The pros of choosing less calories must outweigh the cons," Sandon added. "In other words, they must see a benefit that is strong enough to outweigh the cons of a high-calorie meal that will be immediately satisfying and tasty," given, she said, that the number one reason people say they eat is for taste, not health.

Study author Downs said, "Now there is a reasonable argument to make that we should have these calorie labels and access to information. Certainly, for someone who's already health conscious, providing information and transparency is helpful. But the problem comes when we think that this is the solution to the obesity epidemic among the at-risk population we're trying to address."

More information

For more on food consumption guidelines, visit the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

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