Hoboken Health Corner: July 2012

Do you watch calories?

By Leslie Goldstein, RD

Do you take the time to notice when you are ordering your salad or sandwich on your lunch break that many NYC chain restaurants have calorie counts posted? As of 2008, restaurants in NYC with greater than 15 outlets (approximately 10% of NYC restaurants) have been required to post calorie counts.

In May 2012, Mayor Bloomberg proposed a ban that would, beginning as early as March 2013, eliminate drinks larger than 16 oz found in movie theaters, delis, fast food restaurants and sports arenas. 16 oz is a Grande sized Frapuccino at Starbucks, or a medium sized soda bottle. The law does not affect diet sodas, fruit juice, milkshakes, or alcohol; it would also not affect drinks with less than 25 calories per 8 oz. Additionally, it will not apply to beverages in a supermarket, vending machines or convenience store.

NYC also monitors other food you eat too

In addition to monitoring sugar content in beverages and calorie counts in restaurants, NYC has also, since 2008, been monitoring trans fat intake. In NYC trans fat is required to be less than 0.5 grams per serving. Recent studies show a decrease in consumer intake of trans fat. The American Heart Association (AHA) recommends 2 grams or less of trans fat daily.

Americans consume greater than 1/3 of their calories outside of the house; additionally, greater than 50% of New Yorkers are overweight or obese.

Do you pay attention to calorie counts in NYC or Hoboken when you order what you think to be a low calorie lunch at Panera Bread? That half turkey and cheese sandwich with a half low fat vegetable soup clocks in at 610 calories and 30 grams of fat, and that’s without a side that delicious bread (180 calories, 1.5 grams of fat).

While, it’s good to be aware of calories, does it bother you how much NYC is controlling or recommending what you put into your body? Do you find that these constant health reminders help or hinder your decisions at restaurants? Do you hope more states will jump on the bandwagon?

About Leslie Goldstein, RD

Leslie Goldstein is a Registered Dietitian (RD) practicing in North Bergen and Hoboken, New Jersey. Leslie is an avid exerciser who combines her nutrition knowledge and passion with motivational support in counseling to help her clients make lifestyle changes. Leslie specializes in weight management, general wellness, Diabetes, bariatric surgery, hypertension and cardiovascular disease. Leslie accepts most major insurances. www.healthystepnutrition.com 8100 Kennedy Blvd. North Bergen, NJ 07047 Ph: 201-378-3287 Email: LeslieGoldsteinRD@gmail.com

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