Should Calories be Displayed on Menus? Live on the BBC News Channel

Should Calories be Displayed on Menus? Live on the BBC News Channel

Hello! So just incase you missed it, I spoke on the BBC News channel the other week all about the idea of displaying calories on menus & here is my clip .. I speak mainly from 3 minutes in & excuse the pout/kebab meat!



And here are some of the notes that I made on the subject before I went on! ?


?? From the current evidence we have it’s unclear if putting calories on menus actually makes a difference to consumer behaviour and it could actually increase the risk of binge eating and unhealthy weight control behaviours.


? In one study of over 1800 people only 50% noticed the calories were on the menu and of that only 12% actually used the information.


? I think Calorie Information should be available online for the big restaurant and fast food chains for people to check if they want (like many already do) as they may have a much bigger impact on the nation as a whole.


??‍? But small businesses such as local cafes should be exempt due to the cost and work involved eg for special items that change weekly.


? I also question how accurate counting calories on menus is eg if you add a little extra oil here and there it may change the calorie intake anyway (and larger/smaller steaks, avocados, slices of cake) you could easily be over 20% out!


We must remember that Calories aren’t king for health and you can lose weight without calorie counting & the majority of people may not even know what calories are/how many they require on a daily basis (which changes daily depending on your activity levels) and how many they’re consuming at other meal times.


? The worst thing you could do is put the calories on menus and boards like a price-list; it could take the joy out of eating out & for those people who do eat out, it’s perhaps only once a week which they shouldn’t be made to feel guilty about it. On another note, eating disorders are on the rise, & this move could make us become even more obsessive.


CONCLUSION? We should be focusing on WHAT we’re eating (moving to more of a plant focussed diet) and how hungry/full you feel before & afterwards.




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