Calorie labels on menu cards have turned out to be a great way of promoting health awareness among consumers. A new study suggests that health awareness among people has tripled owing to the rule under which authorities made it mandatory for restaurants and eateries to mention calorie labels. Obesity is a major concern in the United States and calorie label mainly aims at making people conscious about their diet as calorie count is very important for maintaining a sound health. Previously only those who were health conscious used to check their calorie intake but this rule is also compelling the obese people to watch it.
A team of researchers surveyed about 3,000 King County residents who regularly dine out. The survey in fact began even before the implementation of calorie mention regulation. It was found that nearly 550 customers at McDonald Big Mac make use of the calorie information. Number of customers at Starbucks Caramel Frappuccino doing so is 380. The overall result showed that 8 percent people in 2008 used to watch their calorie intake but in 2010, a year after mandatory labeling was introduced, it rose to 25 percent.
Roxana Chen, a social-research scientist with Public Health — Seattle & King County, who led the study said “It definitely is promising. If you post information, more people are going to see it and use it.” However, the study also found that many people do not pay attention to the calorie labels. White, older, wealthier and more highly educated consumers were found to be less likely to notice calorie information whereas women with higher incomes and those who eat fast-food instead of eating at sit-down restaurants were more interested in calorie information.
Nevertheless, the new rule has furnished positive result as a number of obese people have started to watch out their calorie intake in restaurants. Roxana Chen has confirmed that the calorie information can indeed pose a positive impact on the health of people. She also mentioned that this new study will help to increase efforts for creating health awareness among more number of people. The study has been published in the American Journal of Public Health.