Weight Loss Support - New York's New Calorie Disclosure Law :O




Glory87
07-16-2008, 02:14 PM
http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/25464987/

This is awesome, with a side order of awesome with an awesome cherry on top. Bring it ON!


luckymommy
07-16-2008, 02:28 PM
Great article! I wish they would implement this all over the country. Then, I think more restaurants would be motivated to create actual lighter menues. Also, when you buy items at restaurants, they often give you more calories due to human erro r in portion control. I can't believe people would rather get the menu without the calories though! Isn't that so funny/strange? Denial is a great place to be, I suppose! ;)

nelie
07-16-2008, 03:02 PM
That is awesome. I wish they had that here.

This was my favorite part...
“We’re concerned,” acknowledged Eric Hagy, proprietor of Outback Steakhouse on Third Avenue in Manhattan. “I don’t know what effect it will have, but it will bring people’s attention to certain items that are high in calories, like the Bloomin’ Onion appetizer. It has over 2,000 calories, but it’s meant to be shared between two or three people.”

It is an appetizer.. for 2-3 people, which means it is an appetizer for 700-1000 calories. I've never had it so I don't know how filling it is, but I can't imagine it will stop someone from going onto the calorie laden dinner.


Michelle125
07-16-2008, 03:07 PM
Gawd, like 5 years ago I shared a bloomin onion with my boyfriend at the time, and we could barely make it through our dinners. NEVER again!!!

This law is awesome. I am going to Manhattan this weekend to visit my sister. Can't wait to check out some of the menus!!! :)

PhotoChick
07-16-2008, 03:34 PM
I've never had it so I don't know how filling it is, but I can't imagine it will stop someone from going onto the calorie laden dinner.Nope. We've had it on a double date before - 1/4 of the onion, steak, potato, salad, and dessert (also split 4 ways).

Of coruse at the time I didn't know that my meal was around 5000 calories. I might have thought twice if I had. OTOH, maybe I wouldn't have.

.

PhotoChick
07-16-2008, 03:48 PM
You know what's really sad is this quote:

That’s what Fowler, the woman who was dining recently with her friends at T.G.I. Friday's, decided to do. [switch menus]

“I’m so upset,” she said, noting some entrees — like the Jack Daniels ribs and shrimp dinner — contain almost 2,000 calories, and the desserts were more of the same (the brownie obsession is 1,500 calories). “I wish they wouldn’t have done this.”

But then Fowler noticed that the waiter had handed her friend an old menu, which didn’t have calorie counts on it.

“You got a menu without anything on it?” she asked her friend. “Can I have yours?”

People would rather eat unhealthily and be ignorant than actually think about what they're eating and maybe pressure the restaurants to provide other, healthy options.

.

KLK
07-16-2008, 04:32 PM
Eh, I live in NYC and this mandate doesn't include most places -- non-chain restaurants aren't subject to this requirement and since most restaurants in NYC aren't chains, this new law is kind of pointless.

Also, generally, our mayor (Mike Bloomberg) is SUCH a Mother Hen about everything, at least in my opinion, that this actually kind of annoys me. It's right up there with no smoking in bars, no horn-honking, getting tickets for not wearing a seatbelt, etc etc. other examples I can't think of. I understand why this all seems appealing, the mayor wanting to promote health and safety and stuff, but he's not our mom. Next we're going to sent to our rooms without dinner for crossing against the light...

MindiV
07-16-2008, 04:42 PM
I can't wait for the information to get out...there will be benefits for those of us who live in other states, for sure. When one restaurant in a chain in NYC posts its calorie information, it'll eventually end up online for everyone to see! So I can go to the same restaurant down here in Texas and, in theory, know what I'm getting even though it's not posted here....yay!

yoyonomoreinvegas
07-16-2008, 04:45 PM
People would rather eat unhealthily and be ignorant than actually think about what they're eating and maybe pressure the restaurants to provide other, healthy options.

Kind of proves that old saying "ignorance is bliss" doesn't it. :D

And some people (raises hand :o ) would rather not know how many calories they are getting so they can whine "I don't eat that much - all I had all day was one corn muffin and a Bloomin' Onion" Read: There must be something wrong, it can't be MY fault I got this fat.

Yes, I now firmly believe that I am the only one who is ultimately responsible/accountable for every bite I put in my mouth and it's up to me to be as informed as possible but it took me 40 years of frustration to figure out how to go about gathering the right information. If I had had calorie content in front of my face all that time I can honestly say there probably would have been fewer drive through meals in my dieting career (I really thought that, if it was my only meal, a 3lb mega burrito from Del Taco wasn't eating too much. :frypan:) At the risk of sounding a little like a conspiracy theorist I've felt for a long time that fast food/chain restaurant outlets and food processing companies have been getting away with what boils down to false advertising - billing things as "healthy choices" or "fat free" - even some things I've seen stamped with a big old "organic" on the package but contains HFC :?: I'm thrilled to see this trend and wish it would become federal law.

nelie
07-16-2008, 04:51 PM
One reason I think it is good is it will have a trickle down effect. If restaurants can no longer sell their 2000 calorie items, then they will have to make their food items healthier. Since they often have the same foods at other restaurants, then other restaurants in different states will then hopefully get the healthier menu.

JayEll
07-16-2008, 06:33 PM
I posted a link to the article before I saw Glory87's post--so I've edited out my duplicate link.

Folks, it's what we often find out when we start paying attention... Buyer Beware!

Jay

SoulBliss
07-16-2008, 06:43 PM
I think it is FABULOUS. Anything that helps people become more conscious (in any way) is wonderful!!! :cp:

jtammy
07-16-2008, 06:44 PM
Thanks for the link Jay. That's fascinating to read. I thought it was funny that the lady at the end of the article wanted an old menu without the calorie count. That sounds like the old me, living in the land of denial.

I would LOVE LOVE LOVE to be able to walk into a restaurant or bakery and see the calorie count right there under the food by the price.

Sweetcaroline
07-16-2008, 06:47 PM
Whose going to report these infractions ? :nono:
Will there be a Calorie Court if you don't pay the fines ? :hungry:
Sorry, couldn't resist...:tape:
I actually think this is great ! and shows a lot of progress... If NYC can do it successfully it will get a lot of attention...

~Caroline~

jellydisney
07-16-2008, 08:31 PM
It fascinates me how shocked people are. I guess your average person really has no idea how many calories are in foods -- but a lot of them don't want to know! That's what's most surprising of all. It like, "if I can't see the numbers, it's not really 2000 calories." It's hilarious that the restaurants are all running out of the lowest calorie items.

I would love it if this law came to Boston!

vixjean
07-16-2008, 08:31 PM
That is SUPER awesome, I wonder if it will EVER happen in Chicago - LOL!
This is great because, some chains do not publish their info on the web, so it might help me if our New York peps start adding these things to www.thedailyplate.com
I feel really strongly that this is the right thing to do. I even think the little ma & pa's should have the calories as well!
Imagine if they tell you the calories at the drinks at the bar too!

beautifulone
07-16-2008, 08:32 PM
I'm not sure what I think about it yet. I mean, obviously it's great for people who DO want to know what they are consuming. And I think it's equally important that people who wouldn't try to seek health information out on their own, have it presented to them regardless. I know that you can argue this point otherwise.. but obesity affects us all in a myriad of ways.

I imagine restaurants will have to modify their menus to present healthier options, which is fabulous.. but will their customers want healthier options? People don't necessarily want the calories but they want the cheese... Not everyone likes the taste of healthy food. And my concern is that in baked goods, for example, more and more food will be created with artificial ingredients like artificial sweeteners. And there are people who will be consuming that, without realizing it, who wouldn't normally choose to do so.

just keep swimming
07-16-2008, 08:37 PM
I would love it if this law came to Boston!

Ditto!

PhotoChick
07-16-2008, 08:46 PM
Actually yes, there will be. The city of New York is going to audit restaurants at random and the article said that fines wil range from $200 to $2000 per infraction.

.

betsysunqueen
07-16-2008, 08:48 PM
even some things I've seen stamped with a big old "organic" on the package but contains HFC :?: I'm thrilled to see this trend and wish it would become federal law.

Actually, there is no reason why HFC couldn't be organic. Food that is certified "organic" is only representing itself as having been produced according to certain production standards (non-irridiated, no conventional pesticides, and non-GMO). HFC produced with organic corn could potentially meet all of these standards.

bluesurfgirl
07-16-2008, 08:49 PM
wow... wish this would become a mandatory law in all states.

having that kind of info right in front of you would be so helpful in an ongoing way to build knowledge and awareness over time and (try to help) lead to better, more informed choices.

especially eye-opening with regard to the meals that are presented/marketed with a healthy look and feel (the salads with chicken and fruit, etc. that turned out to be more than 1000 calories).

great info.

thanks for posting this.

Diva
07-16-2008, 08:55 PM
Wow that was a fascinating read. I am going to have to share this with my friends. :)

JulieJ08
07-16-2008, 08:58 PM
I'm glad someone is doing it.

rockinrobin
07-16-2008, 09:18 PM
This is incredibly, incredibly cool. Could you imagine the ramifactions this could have? If people really start staying away from the calorie laden stuff, the restaurants may be FORCED to serve lighter fare.

My friend just today was telling me about this. I hadn't seen it. Probably because I don't go to restaurants very often. She said whe was in Dunkin' Donuts and couldn't believe how many calories a muffin was. I hit it right on the head, I'm proud to say.

She also said that a vanilla frosted and a strawberry frosted donut was 100 calories less then the chocolate frosted.

This can really be something significant. I think our mayor is on to something. He's very into quality of life laws. My only beef with Mayor Bloomberg, is that he has made the fines on tickets sky high. But I say, bring on more and more quality of life laws.

Ija
07-16-2008, 09:18 PM
Does anyone know how the calorie counts are determined? I just wonder about how accurate they are.

Heather
07-16-2008, 09:39 PM
And my concern is that in baked goods, for example, more and more food will be created with artificial ingredients like artificial sweeteners. And there are people who will be consuming that, without realizing it, who wouldn't normally choose to do so.

That's an interesting point -- I hadn't thought about that! You might be right. hmmmm.

EZMONEY
07-16-2008, 09:55 PM
See! I told you it wasn't my fault I got fat!

Mango683
07-16-2008, 09:59 PM
Now, in my "new life" I study a restaurant's menu/nutrition guide before I go, so I know exactly what I'm getting and how many calories it's going to set me back. It irritates me when the restaurant's menu either isn't online, or they don't have nutrition info on there (ahem, Chipotle!) This is just great- it's going to be such an eye opener for people. Sure, it's going to get a lot mad, but they can still eat it- no one's stopping them. There's nothing wrong with an educated society.

vikkivma
07-16-2008, 10:10 PM
Well, even though some restaurants may try to switch them for still-unhealthy choices (like aspertame), the great thing is simply getting awareness out there.

Not being able to find an entree under 1000 calories is ridiculous.

The only part that really surprised me was people being shocked at the calorie content of Starbucks snacks or muffins - I thought that little secret was known to many ages ago.

Though I suppose as someone who's struggled with her weight since age 8, it's probably something I'm more likely to know. lol.

fiberlover
07-16-2008, 10:17 PM
You know, the restaurants could really help themselves by serving 1/2 portions. Most portions sizes are huge, so it isn't surprising to see the sky high calorie counts.

rockinrobin
07-16-2008, 10:57 PM
You know, the restaurants could really help themselves by serving 1/2 portions. Most portions sizes are huge, so it isn't surprising to see the sky high calorie counts.

Ever been to Cheesecake Factory? You can easily share one of their entree's with 2 people and the portions would still be more then adequate. They're just ENORMOUS.

But you make a very good point. Just cutting down on the sheer volume of the stuff would certainly help to decrease those calorie counts.

I remember, back in the day, before my lifestyle change, I would cook sooo freely with oil, butter, and every other high calorie item you can think of - you name it. I could have easily cut back with no compromise to the taste. Bet you restaurants could do the same. They're most likely going to have to start. :crossed:

SoulBliss
07-16-2008, 11:05 PM
It irritates me when the restaurant's menu either isn't online, or they don't have nutrition info on there (ahem, Chipotle!) ;)
http://www.chipotlefan.com/index.php?id=nutrition_calculator

JulieJ08
07-16-2008, 11:25 PM
They can certainly cook better with almost no loss in expected flavor. It's just easier to use lots of fat and cream and salt.

And portion size is a huge part of it, even if they were cooking better. Portion size in this country is ridiculous.

ars
07-16-2008, 11:32 PM
I wish this would spread out to the rest of New York state, it would make eating out on the fly so much easier!

Tomato
07-16-2008, 11:34 PM
I think this is just great. Hopefully, it will be an eye-opener for many people who will think twice about ordering a 1,500 calorie dinner followed by a 600 calorie dessert and a 400 calorie drink.
Sure, there will still be many who will ignore the information and brush it off saying "I lead an active life" etc. but I do believe this will eventually force the restaurants to present healthier meals.
I wish this trickled down (or should I say up? :)) to Canada as well.

nelie
07-17-2008, 11:27 AM
Now, in my "new life" I study a restaurant's menu/nutrition guide before I go, so I know exactly what I'm getting and how many calories it's going to set me back. It irritates me when the restaurant's menu either isn't online, or they don't have nutrition info on there (ahem, Chipotle!) This is just great- it's going to be such an eye opener for people. Sure, it's going to get a lot mad, but they can still eat it- no one's stopping them. There's nothing wrong with an educated society.

I don't know where they got it, but ChipotleFan.com is a great resource for nutritional information for Chipotle. I use it to create my meal before I go to Chipotle.

http://www.chipotlefan.com/index.php?id=nutrition_calculator

QuilterInVA
07-17-2008, 11:47 AM
You know, when chains do offer healthy food, it doesn't sell and goes off the menu. People say they want it, but when it comes to fries or a salad with that burger, most will go for the fries.

nelie
07-17-2008, 11:59 AM
But according to the article, their higher calorie items aren't selling as well as their lower calorie items. So maybe the information will help healthier items stay on the menu.

JayEll
07-17-2008, 12:06 PM
I think the point is that when people have the information right in front of them, they tend NOT to make the decision to have fries... They can't pretend that it just means "a few" more calories, "what the heck". We've all played that mental game.

I cringe every time I think of the chili cheese fries I used to eat, completely oblivious to how much food that really was... Oh, and a milkshake... :fr:

Jay

PhotoChick
07-17-2008, 12:24 PM
I think a fair number of people will still go for the fries ... but at least they'll do it from an informed standpoint.

Even now, knowing all I know, I will "splurge" on something ... with full awareness of how many calories it is. Last week I had a yogurt shake from Steak and Shake - knowing full well that it was 500+ cals. But at least I wasn't just saying "oh it's yogurt, so it must be healthy and low cal". :)

I do think that it will force restaurants to rethink their menus. I think there's a perfectly appropriate time and place for a 2500 calorie splurge meal. I also think that there should be a range of items on a restaurant's menu.

.

vikkivma
07-17-2008, 12:31 PM
I agree, Photo - and I think the bigger point was what was brought up in the article by the girl who ordered the salad. If they're going to advertise it as a healthy option, it should probably be less than a burger and fries.

What I think this will cut down on most of all is just that false advertising, which is wrong.

Ija
07-17-2008, 12:34 PM
You know, when chains do offer healthy food, it doesn't sell and goes off the menu. People say they want it, but when it comes to fries or a salad with that burger, most will go for the fries.

Good point, but I think most people don't realize how terrible the burger and fries really are and so don't feel compelled to replace them with healthier things. I believe that once people are made aware that they're getting 1500 calories and not 500, they may opt (sometimes, at least) for something a little less caloric. Here's hoping, anyway.

BrandNewJen
07-17-2008, 12:48 PM
The fact is that we have the RIGHT to know the truth about the food we are being served. We have the right to control what goes in our mouths and we have the RIGHT to be fairly informed. To go in and believe the false advertising that a salad is better for you than a burger and fries... that's not FAIR. And everyone is free to make their own decisions, whether there is a calorie label or not. But we have a right to not be misinformed...

I love it--- I know for a FACT that there have been times I've "assumed" that something is not nearly as bad for me... I've stood in front of a bakery case knowing I wanted to be "bad"... but it would help to know EXACTLY how bad I am being... I mean, there's varying degrees of bad and if I would have known the lemon drop cake was WORSE than the "chocolate wonderful tasty treat" I woulda just got the chocolate thing in the first place!

JulieJ08
07-17-2008, 01:27 PM
I think even if someone still orders something astronomically high in calories, that isn't necessarily a failure of the system. It may takes a while for them to decide enough is enough, but without the information in the first place, it won't nag at them until they do something about it. Yeah, people already know the calories are bad, but denial doesn't even take any hits without that "1600 calories" staring at them from the menu.

lynnm39
07-17-2008, 02:05 PM
Eh, I live in NYC and this mandate doesn't include most places -- non-chain restaurants aren't subject to this requirement and since most restaurants in NYC aren't chains, this new law is kind of pointless.

Also, generally, our mayor (Mike Bloomberg) is SUCH a Mother Hen about everything, at least in my opinion, that this actually kind of annoys me. It's right up there with no smoking in bars, no horn-honking, getting tickets for not wearing a seatbelt, etc etc. other examples I can't think of. I understand why this all seems appealing, the mayor wanting to promote health and safety and stuff, but he's not our mom. Next we're going to sent to our rooms without dinner for crossing against the light...

I completely agree with you. Additionally, most chain restaurants have this information on their websites, so if people were really interested in the calorie counts for foods, they could look it up on the website. Although I do believe that knowledge is a start, I don't believe that lack of knowledge alone is the cause of weight gain. I could probably tell you the calories in most foods without even looking, but that doesn't mean I won't eat higher calorie foods. I'm just leery of the nanny-state mentality of which this seems to be an example.

rockinrobin
07-17-2008, 02:15 PM
I completely agree with you. Additionally, most chain restaurants have this information on their websites, so if people were really interested in the calorie counts for foods, they could look it up on the website. Although I do believe that knowledge is a start, I don't believe that lack of knowledge alone is the cause of weight gain. I could probably tell you the calories in most foods without even looking, but that doesn't mean I won't eat higher calorie foods. I'm just leery of the nanny-state mentality of which this seems to be an example.

Yes, if people were truly interested they would take the time to look it up prior to getting to the restaurant.

But I think this law was intended for the people who were NOT that interested beforehand. The ones who would rather not know or just didn't think enough about it. But once they've been made to realize, once they've been made AWARE of the astronomical calorie counts, they just might take a harder look and make some better choices. Hopefully.

lynnm39
07-17-2008, 02:16 PM
. . . And my concern is that in baked goods, for example, more and more food will be created with artificial ingredients like artificial sweeteners. And there are people who will be consuming that, without realizing it, who wouldn't normally choose to do so.

A couple of months ago, I heard a story on NPR about how the trans fat bans are causing bakeries big problems because butter actually contains some trace trans fats. So, many bakeries are having to decide to switch from butter (which is all natural) to a franken-fat like margerine.

PhotoChick
07-17-2008, 03:05 PM
so if people were really interested in the calorie counts for foods, they could look it up on the website. Although I do believe that knowledge is a start, I don't believe that lack of knowledge alone is the cause of weight gain.I do believe lack of knowledge is a HUGE cause of weight gain in the US. I would venture to guess that the vast majority of Americans don't really know how many calories they are eating even on "healthy" diets. Most people don't know how many calories they should be eating a day, how much of any given nutrient they should have, etc. Just look at some of the questions asked by new members (Lord knows I remember some of the things I thought were healthy and some of the misconceptions *I* had when I started really getting serious about ths journey!).

And further to that, even people who DO know what is healthy and what isn't aren't always aware of how restaurants cook.

We are bombarded with messages daily that, for example, a chicken salad is a healthy choice. So we go to TGIF and order a chicken salad thinking it's healthy and don't realize that it's 780 calories. And I remember finding out that the "healthy" smoked turkey sandwich at Chili's was over 800 cals - why? Because they coat the bread with butter oil first and grill it - on the inside - so that they mayo doesn't soak into the bread. It's a restaurant trick to make sure the sandwich doesn't get soggy before it gets to the customer. But it never occurred to me that I needed to worry about my "healthy" turkey sandwich on wheat being grilled on the inside with butter oil. Or what about the steak houses that finish off their steaks with a pat of herbed butter on top - I remember a thread here where very knowledgeable people were *shocked* by that and didn't realize that it happened - and added 250 or more cals to a simple grilled filet.

Just read the article about how people were shocked that they couldn't find an entree under 1000 cals.

People don't realize that what they're eating is not healthy because they've been marketed to that salad is healthy, chicken is healthy, lean pork is healthy - and have NO CLUE that the chicken or pork or whatever that they're eating has been prepared restaurant style - which means cooked in oil and butter.

And you assume that everyone who wants to (a) has internet access (b) has the knowledge to look this stuff up on the web and (c) would even think to do it. My MIL has a computer, has internet access, but it would NEVER in a million zillion years occur to her to look up calorie counts online.

I think it's very important to have that information EASILY accessible to anyone at any time.

.

KLK
07-17-2008, 03:06 PM
YES! You see this is EXACTLY why, as a NYC resident, I think this is such a dumb initiative on the part of the city.

1. First of all, as you said, all it does it make places find ways around having high calorie counts -- even if it means using worse ingredients. I'd rather have a 400 calorie muffin made from butter than a 100 calorie muffin made from God-only-knows.

2. Most food places in NYC aren't chains, so most restaurants don't have to post their calorie counts. So 90% of the time, the calorie info mandate is irrelevent. Living in NYC my whole life, there are just some chain restaurants I've never eaten in ever (Arby's, Chik-a-fil, Fridays are some that come to mind that I've never been in). Some major chain restaurants we don't even have here. The chains restaurants in the NYC area are actually mostly out of the city, in Westchester county, where this mandate doesn't apply.

3. There are SOOOOO many better ways to use time and money in this city. Maybe the mayor and his cadre should sit around figuring out how to make it possible to check the balance of and refill your metrocard at the bus stop, rather than just in the subways (for instance). THAT would be sweet.

I see why this seems like a good idea, but it turns out to be pretty irrelevent at the end of the day.


A couple of months ago, I heard a story on NPR about how the trans fat bans are causing bakeries big problems because butter actually contains some trace trans fats. So, many bakeries are having to decide to switch from butter (which is all natural) to a franken-fat like margerine.

JulieJ08
07-17-2008, 03:35 PM
I wonder if they specifically have to list the info for the whole entree, or if they will break it down to calories for one "serving" to make it look better. Of course, if they have to list that the entree contains 6 servings, it won't help ;)

lynnm39
07-17-2008, 05:08 PM
I do believe lack of knowledge is a HUGE cause of weight gain in the US. I would venture to guess that the vast majority of Americans don't really know how many calories they are eating even on "healthy" diets. Most people don't know how many calories they should be eating a day, how much of any given nutrient they should have, etc. Just look at some of the questions asked by new members (Lord knows I remember some of the things I thought were healthy and some of the misconceptions *I* had when I started really getting serious about ths journey!).

And further to that, even people who DO know what is healthy and what isn't aren't always aware of how restaurants cook.

We are bombarded with messages daily that, for example, a chicken salad is a healthy choice. So we go to TGIF and order a chicken salad thinking it's healthy and don't realize that it's 780 calories. And I remember finding out that the "healthy" smoked turkey sandwich at Chili's was over 800 cals - why? Because they coat the bread with butter oil first and grill it - on the inside - so that they mayo doesn't soak into the bread. It's a restaurant trick to make sure the sandwich doesn't get soggy before it gets to the customer. But it never occurred to me that I needed to worry about my "healthy" turkey sandwich on wheat being grilled on the inside with butter oil. Or what about the steak houses that finish off their steaks with a pat of herbed butter on top - I remember a thread here where very knowledgeable people were *shocked* by that and didn't realize that it happened - and added 250 or more cals to a simple grilled filet.

Just read the article about how people were shocked that they couldn't find an entree under 1000 cals.

People don't realize that what they're eating is not healthy because they've been marketed to that salad is healthy, chicken is healthy, lean pork is healthy - and have NO CLUE that the chicken or pork or whatever that they're eating has been prepared restaurant style - which means cooked in oil and butter.

And you assume that everyone who wants to (a) has internet access (b) has the knowledge to look this stuff up on the web and (c) would even think to do it. My MIL has a computer, has internet access, but it would NEVER in a million zillion years occur to her to look up calorie counts online.

I think it's very important to have that information EASILY accessible to anyone at any time.

.


I don't think that the overweight problem in America is because of lack of knowledge at all. For every example you presented in your post, I could present an opposite example, but to what end? My concern is the the government is spending time on issues that are none of their affair. My weight is not the government's business. Sure, it may impact medical costs, but if we start going down that road, we might as well put all our life habits under the purvue of the government. I guess well have to agree to disagree.

PhotoChick
07-17-2008, 05:14 PM
My concern is the the government is spending time on issues that are none of their affair. My weight is not the government's business.
This law has NOTHING to do with managing YOUR weight. I don't see where you are getting that perception from. The government is doing nothing to YOU in this scenario.

What they are doing is requiring business to disclose to consumers a full range of information about the food that is being served.

I'm a big big big believer of non-interference by the government. I don't believe in legislating morality or in any kind of Big Brother mentality. But I do believe laws should be in place that protect consumers to a reasonable degree while not providing an undue burden on the business - and that includes making companies of a certain size be honest with consumers about what goes into their food.

.

lynnm39
07-17-2008, 05:17 PM
This law has NOTHING to do with managing YOUR weight. I don't see where you are getting that perception from. The government is doing nothing to YOU in this scenario.

What they are doing is requiring business to disclose to consumers a full range of information about the food that is being served.

.

Actually, it is about managing weight. What else would be the goal. Also, people own the companies that are required to comply with this new law.

It's no biggie, though. :) I understand and respect your position, even though I disagree with it.

MindiV
07-17-2008, 05:27 PM
I've long wondered why food manufacturers are required to put calorie counts, etc., on nutrition labels, when restaurants can serve whatever they want, prepared however they want, with no accountability what-so-ever.

Yes, this initiative seems to be about weight management. However, it's ONLY putting out the information that I firmly believe people need to have to make good choices. It's not forcing restaurants to serve healthier foods, or prohibiting people from eating them.

I can't wait for the information to trickle down and get posted online so I can see, finally, how many calories are in foods served in our chain restaurants down here.

KLK
07-17-2008, 05:29 PM
This same mayor, btw, has taken steps to try to get people to stop smoking by taxing cigarettes heavily (so they're like $8 a pack). Now... I am all in favor of people quitting smoking bc it is such an unhealthy habit, but who is Mike Bloomberg to try to force me to quit, to "price me out" of cigarettes? Most smokers are aware of how bad the habit is (and most WILL shell out $8 for a pack, if necessary) but why is this the mayor's problem? I dunno... I just feel he's a Mother Hen about everything. He's an a health crusade and all 8 million of his little kids are along for the ride...

But my biggest feeling ab this calorie thing is how UNNECESSARY it is in this city! Maybe in another state, in another city, in another town this might make sense but it simply doesn't here, for the most part. I mean, who cares if Uno's posts its calorie counts when Mike's Pizzaria down the block, the kind of place where NYCers would go to get their pizza, doesn't? But I don't think we should force individual restaurants to comply with this regulation (God knows small businesspeople struggle enough...). Instead, I think Bloomberg should figure out that Metrocard bus stop thingie I was talking ab earlier...



I don't think that the overweight problem in America is because of lack of knowledge at all. For every example you presented in your post, I could present an opposite example, but to what end? My concern is the the government is spending time on issues that are none of their affair. My weight is not the government's business. Sure, it may impact medical costs, but if we start going down that road, we might as well put all our life habits under the purvue of the government. I guess well have to agree to disagree.

PhotoChick
07-17-2008, 05:47 PM
This same mayor, btw, has taken steps to try to get people to stop smoking by taxing cigarettes heavily (so they're like $8 a pack). Now... I am all in favor of people quitting smoking bc it is such an unhealthy habit, but who is Mike Bloomberg to try to force me to quit, to "price me out" of cigarettes?Ok, I'll provide the counterpoint.

The cost of providing medical care to people who smoke, despite knowing it's bad for them, is astronomical. My taxes and my insurance bills are affected by someone else's decision to smoke.

So I am fully in support of "luxury" taxes to help offset those costs. Not as an effort to dissuade, but as a way to compensate for the huge additional costs that society has to shoulder because of what is, essentially, a lifestyle choice.

Then again, I believe that junk food should be subject to a "luxury" tax. And I'm all in favor of legalizing pot and subjecting it to a luxury tax as well.

Would solve a lot of our budget woes to have the added income. ;)

.

KLK
07-17-2008, 06:04 PM
I see what you're saying, but I don't know... for some reason taxing cigarettes, posting calorie counts, outlawing trans fats, giving tickets for making too much noise (yes Bloomberg does this too) all make me pretty uncomfortable. I can't exactly put my finger on WHY, but it does.

Ok, I'll provide the counterpoint.

The cost of providing medical care to people who smoke, despite knowing it's bad for them, is astronomical. My taxes and my insurance bills are affected by someone else's decision to smoke.

So I am fully in support of "luxury" taxes to help offset those costs. Not as an effort to dissuade, but as a way to compensate for the huge additional costs that society has to shoulder because of what is, essentially, a lifestyle choice.

Then again, I believe that junk food should be subject to a "luxury" tax. And I'm all in favor of legalizing pot and subjecting it to a luxury tax as well.

Would solve a lot of our budget woes to have the added income. ;)

.

Ija
07-17-2008, 06:04 PM
Not everyone can pull up to a computer and download nutritional information every time they go out to eat. Having the information available at the restaurant is essential for people to make informed decisions.

Personally, I don't think making nutritional information freely available to people is an example of nannying. I believe we have the right to know what is in the food we're served, and if restaurants can publish fancy websites with that information, they can put it right there on the menu, too.

PhotoChick
07-17-2008, 06:11 PM
giving tickets for making too much noise (yes Bloomberg does this too) But see, I don't have a problem with this either. Most cities (every city I've ever lived in) has a noise ordinance. If you contribute to noise pollution or consistently create a disruption with loud noises, you can be ticketed or fined.

IN fact here in my town, if your car alarm goes off w/out cause (i.e. you have it set to be so sensitive that a cat or the wind or whatever sets it off) you can receive a ticket for noise pollution.

I applaud a government that actually enforces their noise ordinance.

.

KLK
07-17-2008, 06:27 PM
Not that I want to stand in the street with a megaphone screaming or anything, but this is New York City! If you can't make noise here... then where?

Honestly, tickets are given for EVERYTHING. You dont wear your seatbelt, even if you're idling in a doubleparked car? Ticket. You don't put your garbage out the right way at the right time (and I don't mean sorting recyclables)? Ticket. Have too many words on your store sign? Ticket.

Bloomberg is the king of tickets and they really don't improve the quality of life. Police and traffic officials actually have a ticket quota these days, so by the end of the month... look out... they're all scrambling to fill their quotas.

And I seriously don't think the calorie listings will improve anyone's health or wellbeing either. As I said, maybe in another city in another state, but here? ... waste of time. I mean, great Domino's has posted its calories, but I'm not eating from Domino's (few people are) so...

I dunno... I just think it's kind of annoying. I'm ALL for eating healthily and exercising (obviously!) but this annoys me. I just don't like having "BE HEALTHY!!!!" jammed down my throat. Maybe I'm wrong about that, but it's how I feel. Oh well.

But see, I don't have a problem with this either. Most cities (every city I've ever lived in) has a noise ordinance. If you contribute to noise pollution or consistently create a disruption with loud noises, you can be ticketed or fined.

IN fact here in my town, if your car alarm goes off w/out cause (i.e. you have it set to be so sensitive that a cat or the wind or whatever sets it off) you can receive a ticket for noise pollution.

I applaud a government that actually enforces their noise ordinance.

.

Ija
07-17-2008, 06:30 PM
I just don't like having "BE HEALTHY!!!!" jammed down my throat. Maybe I'm wrong about that, but it's how I feel. Oh well.

New Yorkers can still eat crap, only now they'll do it knowingly.

KLK
07-17-2008, 06:36 PM
That's fine. But imo the whole thing reeks of nagging (to me).


New Yorkers can still eat crap, only now they'll do it knowingly.

Heffalump
07-17-2008, 06:43 PM
I dunno... I just think it's kind of annoying. I'm ALL for eating healthily and exercising (obviously!) but this annoys me. I just don't like having "BE HEALTHY!!!!" jammed down my throat. Maybe I'm wrong about that, but it's how I feel. Oh well.

;) But if you don't eat there anyway - you won't see it, right?

Just wanted to add to the choir who are excited about this development and will be interested to see how this affects the restaurants' menus and consumer choices in NYC and the rest of the country. While I'm also not to keen on the overregulation of private life, I see this more of an improvement of consumers' rights than a curtailment of their personal choices.

KLK
07-17-2008, 06:56 PM
Also, I think there are more important problems and inconveniences for the city government to handle than a crusade against McDonalds, trans fats and street noise, which is also why I'm bothered.



;) But if you don't eat there anyway - you won't see it, right?

Just wanted to add to the choir who are excited about this development and will be interested to see how this affects the restaurants' menus and consumer choices in NYC and the rest of the country. While I'm also not to keen on the overregulation of private life, I see this more of an improvement of consumers' rights than a curtailment of their personal choices.

JayEll
07-17-2008, 08:08 PM
KLK, it sounds to me like you just don't like anyone telling you what to do. That's understandable! No one does, I think.

There was a time when if someone was making too much noise, their neighbors just said, "Excuse me, but your noise is bothering me," and the person replied, "Oh, OK, sorry about that." These days one is more likely to get shot! So it may be that more people need to be treated like children--because they have never grown up?

With regard to seat belts--anyone who gets into my car and won't wear their seat belt is invited to get out and walk. My car doesn't move until belts are fastened. Welcome to my world! :club:

It's also interesting that the bigger problem that you've named is checking your subway ticket. How about--rape, mugging, murder, robbery...

But we've gotten off track. Anyone who would like to post about the listing of calories on menus, please feel free to do so!

Jay

full of grace
07-17-2008, 08:29 PM
But we've gotten off track. Anyone who would like to post about the listing of calories on menus, please feel free to do so!

I think it's great!

I'm willing to bet that I wouldn't have gotten into size 22s to begin with if I'd dined out at restaurants whose menu items listed calorie counts.

No, I don't like the idea of legislated morality or "better choices" of any kind, as it's (clearly) such a subjective issue of "whose morality," or "whose better choices," and mandating anything like that gets sticky, IMO, but I think INFORMATION IS POWER and I was thrilled when restaurants started making nutrition information available in person and/or on websites, as I was able to start making better--more informed--choices that way.

Right on the menu itself? No head-in-sand behavior possible, that way.

;)

Not saying I'd let a "scary" number keep me from ordering a favorite dish, but I'd sure as heck know how much more rigorous my next workout was going to have to be. :carrot:

Eves
07-17-2008, 08:32 PM
While I'm also not to keen on the overregulation of private life, I see this more of an improvement of consumers' rights than a curtailment of their personal choices.

Exactly. I mean, I want to know what I'm putting into my body. At home, I can buy junk, all of the junk I want, and all of that junk has a nice little label on the side that tells me that it is junk.

At a restaurant, I can choose not to go through the obvious junk route and get a salad, and still end up getting junk!

If the non-chain restaurants started doing this, it would be great as well. I don't think they have to be exact, but it would be nice to know that the "Homestyle veggie lasagna" has between 1200-1400 calories.

Heather
07-17-2008, 08:49 PM
I think it's great!

I'm willing to bet that I wouldn't have gotten into size 22s to begin with if I'd dined out at restaurants whose menu items listed calorie counts.

No, I don't like the idea of legislated morality or "better choices" of any kind, as it's (clearly) such a subjective issue of "whose morality," or "whose better choices," and mandating anything like that gets sticky, IMO, but I think INFORMATION IS POWER and I was thrilled when restaurants started making nutrition information available in person and/or on websites, as I was able to start making better--more informed--choices that way.

Right on the menu itself? No head-in-sand behavior possible, that way.

;)

Not saying I'd let a "scary" number keep me from ordering a favorite dish, but I'd sure as heck know how much more rigorous my next workout was going to have to be. :carrot:

I'm sure that in my "head in the sand" days, I would have ordered the calorie-laden, fattening food at a restaurant without a second thought. I would eat pints of Ben & Jerry's and chase them with cheetos and other junk, all of which had calorie info on the label. I knew how many calories I was inhaling and just didn't care.

These days, I really like having information, so on that level I'm all for it.

But I can see that there are some downsides to the law, too... I'm especially interested in how restaurants might alter the food to cut down on the calories, perhaps in ways that I no longer consider healthy, but that they won't inform me about...

Mango683
07-17-2008, 09:03 PM
;)
http://www.chipotlefan.com/index.php?id=nutrition_calculator





Thank you!!!

I found a lot of their "nutrition" (if you could even call it that) in a roundabout way, but this site is a ton easier!

SoulBliss
07-17-2008, 09:17 PM
You're welcome. :)

taragettingthin
07-18-2008, 03:02 AM
Wow... I wish they would do that here in Detroit. But yeah right... that will NEVER happen, I think. :)

rockinrobin
07-18-2008, 07:06 AM
I'm sure that in my "head in the sand" days, I would have ordered the calorie-laden, fattening food at a restaurant without a second thought. I would eat pints of Ben & Jerry's and chase them with cheetos and other junk, all of which had calorie info on the label. I knew how many calories I was inhaling and just didn't care.

These days, I really like having information, so on that level I'm all for it.
.

Yes, this way me too Heather. I basically KNEW the damage I was doing. But didn't care. :(

But the things I purchased were to eat in private. Didn't want anyone to know I was eating that kind of stuff, actually witness me overeating, as if they couldn't tell just by looking at me. ;)

I would think, that if the calorie counts were written on the items at a restaurant, I may have been too embarasssed to order them in public and that may have deterred me. But I'm not sure, quite honestly. Hopefully, it will be a deterrent to others.

jellydisney
07-18-2008, 08:05 AM
But my biggest feeling ab this calorie thing is how UNNECESSARY it is in this city! Maybe in another state, in another city, in another town this might make sense but it simply doesn't here, for the most part.

I do agree with you there. This type of law would be ideal in suburbs or the midwest, where 90% of the restaurants are big chains. But somebody had to get the ball rolling.

vixjean
07-18-2008, 08:52 AM
These places should really know what they are selling, they are selling food after all, and we should know because we are buying it. When I import clothing - we have to know all the materials and their origins, and report them to Customs.

Heather
07-18-2008, 10:09 AM
Yes, this way me too Heather. I basically KNEW the damage I was doing. But didn't care. :(

But the things I purchased were to eat in private. Didn't want anyone to know I was eating that kind of stuff, actually witness me overeating, as if they couldn't tell just by looking at me. ;)

I would think, that if the calorie counts were written on the items at a restaurant, I may have been too embarasssed to order them in public and that may have deterred me. But I'm not sure, quite honestly. Hopefully, it will be a deterrent to others.

Robin -- I think that's a good point, for all the people who are private eaters -- I think a lot of people moderate what they eat in public.

But not me. I ate whatever I wanted in public too! :o

JayEll
07-18-2008, 10:38 AM
Here's another aspect. I often eat only part of my entree at a restaurant, and it would be really helpful to know the calories. I might order a 1000 calorie entree, but I'd know for sure that I could only eat 1/3 to 1/2 of it. Bring me the box! Gosh, I could eat on that for a couple of days.... ;)

Jay

beautifulone
07-19-2008, 01:50 AM
I really think that this is great. However, I do feel that as a society we sometimes emphasize weight over health. There is such a drive towards consuming low-calorie, low-fat, sugar-free, chemically-laden products (I say product because I cant truly call it food), and consume them in vast quantities without any focus to how harmful and damaging these products are to the human body!!! Of course, being overweight/obese and having extra fat is obviously unhealthy and a main culprit of illness and disease. However, weight is JUST ONE component of health - and it seems that this goes largely ignored. It boggles my mind!!!!! Ohhh my GOD this could turn into a rant.. :dizzy:

People focus on calorie and fat information, but many people tend to ignore the sodium content, the sugar, the TYPES of fat (because not all fats are equal), etc. So while calorie and fat information is posted, I think an ingredient list should be too. Because, as I mentioned earlier, Im concerned about what they will be replacing foods with to maintain the same taste that customers enjoy while altering the nutritional information. Unless, they will actually alter their meal preparation techniques for healthier ways - how likely that is without affecting time and price, I dont know. And healthy, natural ingredients are obviously more expensive - its cheaper to reproduce food in a lab than it is to grow, harvest, prepare, ship, etc it.

Gale02
07-19-2008, 02:53 AM
However, weight is JUST ONE component of health

Sure, and I completely agree with you, but you've gotta start somewhere! Since we can't see our internal organs it's often unhappiness with our weight that starts us on the road to health.

nelie
07-19-2008, 07:43 AM
I agree, you gotta start somewhere. When I was eating meat and eating out, I learned that most restaurants marinate steaks in butter and they also tend to liberally butter veggies. So something you'd have at home could be half the calories of something you eat when you are out.

I eat out once a week and I'm very selective where I eat out at. My favorite restaurant is very health conscious and offers a few steamed entrees, tells you when something is deep fried (only a few of their dishes) or pan fried or not at all. They are a vegan restaurant so there is no butter and they do really focus on healthy ingredients. Still, since they are a small time operation, I don't know exact calorie counts and have to use my best judgment when choosing what I eat and how much.

Tomato
07-19-2008, 10:18 AM
There is such a drive towards consuming low-calorie, low-fat, sugar-free, chemically-laden products (I say product because I cant truly call it food), and consume them in vast quantities without any focus to how harmful and damaging these products are to the human body!!!

Is there? I don't know, I definitely don't feel under any pressure to consume the above 'products'. Sure, any time you turn the TV on, a commercial will pop up showing you a Lean Cuisine frozen entree (just last night, I saw one for deep fried fish - how lean is that? But I digress) but it's all about choices, isn't it? In a way, I don't blame the food industry for churning out such stuff - they are in the business of making profits, and lots of it. As long as people will buy it, they will supply it. And LOTS of people buy it very willingly, because it is CONVENIENT.

People focus on calorie and fat information, but many people tend to ignore the sodium content, the sugar, the TYPES of fat (because not all fats are equal), etc. So while calorie and fat information is posted, I think an ingredient list should be too.

Absolutely, but isn't it already? There are very few items in my grocery store that do not have a label with nutritional information and/or a list of ingredients. And in case such an item already finds its way into my hand, it goes back on the shelf promptly. I don't buy anything if I don't know what's in it. No wonder it always takes me hours to do my groceries - reading all the labels (and often, comparing two items against each other deciding which may be better) is very time consuming. :smug:

WebRover
07-19-2008, 11:15 AM
Those of us who are consumers outside New York City can also be encouraging our local restaurants of national chains to include the nutrition information on our menus as well. If they've already had to calculate it to put it on the NYC menu, no reason they can't print it on ALL menus. Those who want it should start and keep asking for those menus to be available to us as well.

JayEll
07-19-2008, 11:55 AM
Just a note to say--I happen to like the new Lean Cuisine fish entrees. The lemon pepper fish has 330 calories, of which 70 are fat calories (8 grams). The only thing I find negative about them is that the carbs are high.

I think if you do comparisons you'll find that Lean Cuisines are the best of the frozen meals. They aren't for everyone, of course, but I owe my own weight loss in large part to Lean Cuisine.

Jay

Tomato
07-19-2008, 03:52 PM
Just a note to say--I happen to like the new Lean Cuisine fish entrees. The lemon pepper fish has 330 calories, of which 70 are fat calories (8 grams). The only thing I find negative about them is that the carbs are high.

I think if you do comparisons you'll find that Lean Cuisines are the best of the frozen meals. They aren't for everyone, of course, but I owe my own weight loss in large part to Lean Cuisine.

Jay

I just used that commercial because it was the only thing that popped into my mind (I saw it just yesterday, that's why I remembered - I usually zone out when the commercial break starts :D ). I haven't seen it yet, or I should say I haven't read the label on that one yet so I don't know - it just seemed to me that a deep-fried fish would not be the best item. But, even though I buy frozen entrees only rarely (as "back-ups") I do like the Wild Salmon with Basil and I think there is also Thai Chicken? Those two I find very tasty.

It was just an example I used as I don't understand who is "forcing" us to eat such foods - I was hoping the poster to whose post I replied to (was it thebeautifulone? would elaborate.

JayEll
07-19-2008, 05:12 PM
No problem, tomato. :)

I don't think anyone is forcing us to eat chemically laden products. But I also think that advertising is what it is, and if companies think they can appeal to the weight-conscious market with fat free, sugar free, nutrition free... :eek:!!! then they will try...

Personally I'd rather adjust my calories to have a small amount of real food, even if it's full fat, than eat "phony" food. But I do admit that some of those products have a place in a weight loss program. Not everyone is alike. Yay!

Jay

ginny
07-19-2008, 06:37 PM
This community consists of people who are articulate and devoted to learning about weight loss and health. The restaurant calorie totals may not suprise you but it might be a great motivator for people who aren't sure why their pants are getting tight, and may not be net/research savvy.

Women I work with often come talk to me about their attempts at weight loss and I am sometimes amazed. "Going on a diet" means buying products in that section of the supermarket and eating plenty of pasta because it's low-fat. "Eat your vegtables" means adding some to your fettucini alfredo.

I told one woman that If I have protein for breakfast I don't feel the need to snack before lunch, and ended up explaining what I meant by protein. I would bet my savings that she wouldn't guesstimate near the calories in one of those entrees.

So even if this doesn't last long I hope it spreads. The people who it would most benefit prolly don't post here :D . I think even those who slept the most during high school biology class know that one meal totaling your daily calorie allowance should be a rare rare treat.

I just want to add that portion sizes are INSANE. I don't go to these places because I hate wasting food but I don't want one meal for three days. Boring.
I like restaurants with tapas/sampler menus. They are very expensive if you are the type that needs to eat a TGI Fridays portion in a sitting (my best friend) to be happy. At my favorite place I always have the warmed honey goat cheese with tomatoes, and a plate of balsamic drizzled asparagus. FANTASTIC and comes in under 15 bucks ;)

full of grace
07-20-2008, 12:56 AM
I like restaurants with tapas/sampler menus.

Right on!

Those are hugely popular in Los Angeles--thank goodness for me--and it makes it so much easier to keep from drawing attention to a "dieting person" ordering something to nosh on.

And we always hand off our leftovers/take-homes to the homeless in the area, so there's no feeling bad for overdoing or overordering.

But I have to say the tapas places are the most diet-friendly, IMO!

j45rpm
07-20-2008, 12:09 PM
Here's another aspect. I often eat only part of my entree at a restaurant, and it would be really helpful to know the calories. I might order a 1000 calorie entree, but I'd know for sure that I could only eat 1/3 to 1/2 of it. Bring me the box! Gosh, I could eat on that for a couple of days.... ;)

Jay

Moreover, I might order a 1000 calorie entree, but only have leafy greens for the rest of the day, and/or cut an extra 100-200 calories per day off the rest of the week. This data doesn't make me less likely to eat out and order things, it makes me MORE likely to eat out because I know exactly what I'm in for, and can safely eat out and not worry about going over my limits. I just need to plan where those calories go!

JulieJ08
07-20-2008, 02:56 PM
This community consists of people who are articulate and devoted to learning about weight loss and health ... ... ... The people who it would most benefit prolly don't post here

Good point.

I like restaurants with tapas/sampler menus. They are very expensive if you are the type that needs to eat a TGI Fridays portion in a sitting (my best friend) to be happy. At my favorite place I always have the warmed honey goat cheese with tomatoes, and a plate of balsamic drizzled asparagus. FANTASTIC and comes in under 15 bucks ;)

So true. A lot of times those little dishes are more creative than the entrees too. The little meal you mentioned sounds delish.

I don't worry too much about the cost for the amount of food - I just consider it the cost of a dinner out, whether I stuff myself and feel bad, or eat less and really enjoy myself and push away from the table with a comfy tummy.