Or, you go to your favorite restaurant, order your favorite meal (which seems healthy because it isn't fried and you are eating some vegetables with it), to your surprise you've consumed more that have of your recommended daily calorie intake.
So when I read this article on NYTIMES.com I found myself little excited.
"Buried deep in the health care legislation that President Obama signed on Tuesday is a new requirement that will affect any American who walks into a McDonald's, Starbucks or Burger King. Every big restaurant chain in the nation will now be required to put calorie information on their menus and drive-through signs.
In other words, as soon as 2011 it will be impossible to chomp down on a Big Mac without knowing that it contains over 500calories, more than a quarter of the Agriculture Department’s 2,000-calorie daily guideline.
The legislation also requires labels on food items in vending machines, meaning that anybody tempted by a king-size Snickers bar will know up front that it packs 440 calories.
The measure is intended to create a national policy modeled on a requirement that has already taken effect in New York City and was to go into effect in 2011 in places like California and Oregon. The new federal law requires restaurant chains with 20 or more outlets to disclose calorie counts on their food items and supply information on how many calories a healthy person should eat in a day..."
So what do you think? Can this possibly help the obesity rate in America?
I think that it might help. We assume that because we are eating a charbroiled chicken from Carl's Junior that it is healthy, our thought process is that it isn't fried, it's grilled. (Though this IS a better choice than a burger, it is still not 'healthy'.)
Well, to my surprise one day, after trading my hamburger craving for a Charbroiled Santa Fe Chicken sandwich from Carl's Jr. I discovered that 'healthy' choice I made was not so healthy at all! The sandwich (with NO sauce) cost me 13 Weight Watcher points. That is WAY MORE than what I spend on one whole meal, which includes veggies, a meat and a side dish. So to just get a sandwich, no fries or fruit or anything made me rethink my choice!
I think that seeing the calories right on the menu next to the beautiful picture the food industry is so nice to provide (that when you actually get your food looks nothing like it) might have some people rethinking what they eat.
I am excited about this requirement!
What do you think? Will it make you rethink your choices? Do you think this will help America's obesity problem at all? I'd love to hear your thoughts!
The Legal Stuff: This article was taken from the NYTimes web site.
To read the article in full: Click here.