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PAHO supports push for nutritional warnings


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PAHO supports push for nutritional warnings
Dr Anselm Hennis (Internet image)

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Washington – The Pan American Health Organisation (PAHO) has called for support for the CARICOM Regional Organisation for Standards and Quality (CROSQ) proposal to put front-of-package nutritional warnings on food products, which have been shown to help people make healthier dietary choices.

The labeling allows consumers to correctly, quickly, and easily identify foods that are excessive in fats, sugar, and sodium (salt) – all of which are linked to noncommunicable diseases such as heart disease, stroke and diabetes.

The CROSQ proposal, which is under review by CARICOM Member States, suggests adopting front-of-package labeling that meets PAHO thresholds for excessive fats, sugars, and sodium.

“People living in the Caribbean still do not have access to simple and easily understood information about whether food products contain excessive and potentially harmful amounts of sugars, sodium or fats,” said Dr Anselm Hennis, Director of PAHO’s Department of Noncommunicable Diseases and Mental Health.

“The need to know about these food products is even more critical during the COVID-19 pandemic, as persons with NCDs are at greater risk of becoming severely ill or dying from COVID-19.

“In the Caribbean, about one third of the population is at such a risk. They must be extra careful to avoid products excessive in sugars, sodium, saturated fats, trans fats or total fats,” he said. (CMC)

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