Currently, about 5 percent of the packaged foods you see in stores are labeled “healthy.” Companies can add the word to their product only if it meets the government’s criteria.
But the FDA says its existing definition, written in 1994, is outdated. For one thing, it doesn’t include limits on added sugars. Yet scientists know that downing too many sweets can lead to type 2 diabetes, tooth decay, and more. That’s why most sweetened foods would no longer qualify as “healthy” under the new proposal.
So what would be considered “healthy”? Unprocessed, natural foods like nuts, beans, fruits, and veggies would be on the list. Whole grain pasta, eggs, and fish would qualify too. So would certain low-fat yogurts and cheeses.