New website launched to enable healthy shopping
Researchers have launched a new healthy food stars website to help shoppers work out how much fat, salt and sugar is in their food.
The new website, launched by The George Institute for Global Health, rates 55,000 supermarket products and is aimed at helping people avoid an unhealthy diet and stay well.
It is designed to complement the Government’s health star ratings scheme that will see packaged food drink manufacturers clearly label the health rating for their products.
Poor diet leads to obesity and high blood pressure, which in turn lead to strokes, diabetes and heart disease, which are the leading causes of death.
Professor Bruce Neal, of The George Institute and The University of Sydney, said: “The idea behind our website is that it'll give people the chance to see how many stars their favourite products get.
“It’s quite interesting that there is a lot of variation between similar sorts of products.”
Professor Neal, who leads the health star website project, says he hopes to be able to work with manufacturers wanting to work out the correct labelling for their food products.
The database is accurate to December 2013, and will be constantly updated.
The URL is http://www.foodswitchstars.com.au
Shoppers can also use the same website to take part in a new food labelling trial, which will allocate one of five different food labels highlighting the healthiness – or otherwise - of products when scanned using a smart phone. The trial is aimed at finding which labels best promote healthy shopping.