What Is Healthy Food? The FDA Is Still Trying To Figure It Out

A big sticking point for critics is the FDA's regulations around how much fat can be in a "healthy" product.

By Samantha Crook | May 10, 2016

The Food and Drug Administration is considering changing the definition of "healthy," at least for how companies use the word.

This comes after the administration faced criticism from a health food company. KIND argued current regulations let sugary foods with "empty calories" be advertised as "healthy," while overlooking nutrients experts say are actually healthy.

A big sticking point for critics is the FDA's regulations around how much fat can be in a "healthy" product. This means foods that have more fat from ingredients like nuts can be passed over.

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"Nutrient-rich products like a KIND bar or products made from almonds or salmon ... cannot be considered healthy even though they are products that are recommended by the dietary guidelines," the CEO of KIND told CBS.

The company announced Tuesday it has received permission to use the word on its packaging, but it's still advocating for a revision of the FDA's definition.

The Wall Street Journal reports the FDA is planning to ask the public for input on just what "healthy" should actually mean.

This video includes a clip from KIND and an image from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

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