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FDA May Use Eatery Signs to Fight Obesity

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WASHINGTON, Oct 23, 2003 (United Press International via COMTEX) -- The Food and Drug Administration is considering posting nutritional information in restaurants in efforts to stem the U.S. obesity crisis.

The agency, which says it hasn't settled on any plan, will discuss the issue at a public meeting Thursday, according to the Wall Street Journal.

While the FDA hasn't yet decided whether to move forward with the restaurant idea, it says that the industry has indicated interest.

Among other possible plans would include changes to the labeling on packaged foods that might give more prominence to calorie counts and a broader program guiding consumers on how to construct a healthy diet.

"We do not have a clear, unifying message as to what the answer is on obesity," says Lester Crawford, deputy FDA commissioner, who is co-chairman of an agency task force on obesity. "What the public wants to do is get a reality check ... to have an adequate nutritional program that does not make them overweight."

Copyright 2003 by United Press International.

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