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23 Loy. Consumer L. Rev. 505 (2010-2011)
The Informed Consumer is a Healthy Consumer - The American Obesity Epidemic and the Federal Menu Labeling Law

handle is hein.journals/lyclr23 and id is 513 raw text is: THE INFORMED CONSUMER IS A
HEALTHY CONSUMER? THE
AMERICAN OBESITY EPIDEMIC AND
THE FEDERAL MENU LABELING LAW
Katherine Wilbur*
Introduction
A fter the recent passage of the Patient Protection and
Affordable Care Act (Healthcare Act or Act) on March
23, 2010,1 legislators and political figures continue to debate
whether the Act is economically feasible, whether government
regulation of healthcare is constitutional, and whether the Act
should ultimately be repealed or left unfunded. Amid the recent
controversy over the health insurance related portions of the Act,
many unrelated portions have been overlooked despite their
potential to change America into a healthier nation. Specifically,
Congress has mandated that restaurants and similar retail food
stores with twenty or more locations and substantially the same
menu items must provide an approximate calorie value for each
of the restaurant's food and drink offerings on its menu board,
individual menu, or drive thru menu (federal menu labeling
law).2
This new effort to inform and empower consumers to take
control of their health has been met with mixed reviews.3
* J.D. Candidate, May 2012, Loyola University Chicago School of Law;
B.A., Art History, International Studies, 2009, Hope College.
' Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, Pub. L. No. 111-148, 124
Stat. 119 (2010).
Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act § 4205.
See Brian Elbel et al., Calorie Labeling and Food Choices: A First Look
at the Effects on Low-Income People in New York City, 28 HEALTH AFFAIRS
1110 (2009) (last visited Mar. 16, 2011), available at http://content.
healthaffairs.org/content/28/6/w1110.abstract; see also Christina A. Roberto et
al., Evaluating the Impact of Menu Labeling on Food Choices and Intake, 100
AM. J. OF PUB. HEALTH 312 (2010), available at http://ajph.aphapublications

505

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