“Stop the Lying Labels” is aimed at better health

Photo by Stuart MilesA new campaign – “Stop the Lying Labels” – has been launched by the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI) to take a serious look at the way foods are marketed to kids. The group, which advocates for nutrition and health, has criticized some of the nation’s largest food and beverage companies that regularly claim products are “natural” or “healthy” without the proof to back up the advertising. In fact, many of the drinks and snacks advertised to children may actually contain high daily amounts of sodium, sugar and other ingredients that can cause weight gain and health problems.

“Today, some of the trickery that we’re trying to stop includes: General Mills’ false claims that some of its corn-syrup-drenched products are ‘natural,’ Coca-Cola Company’s deceptive health claims about its Vitaminwater (which would be better called Sugarwater), Amway’s deceptive claims about ‘immunity system boosters’ in its Nutrilite products (which do nothing to boost your immunity), Campbell’s misleading labeling about sodium in its soups by pretending that people consume smaller serving sizes, and Dr. Pepper Snapple Group’s made-up claims of benefits from the antioxidants it adds to some of its 7UP sugar drinks, which promote obesity, not health,” says CSPI’s Co-Founder and Executive Director Dr. Michael F. Jacobson.

To combat any misinformation, the group is asking for stronger enforcements of food labels, namely:

-Labels that brag about whole grains should disclose how much are actually in the products.

-The term “natural” should be more clearly defined to prevent factory-made ingredients from being considered natural.

-Labels should highlight high amounts of saturated fat, sodium, and added sugars, and calorie counts should be displayed more prominently.

-Most importantly, Nutrition Facts labels should be augmented by simple, easy-to-understand nutrition ratings on the fronts of packages.

Tell us what you think: Do you trust food advertisements?