Traffic-light food labels

Trevor C Beard, Caryl A Nowson and Malcolm D Riley
Med J Aust 2007; 186 (1): . || doi: 10.5694/j.1326-5377.2007.tb00781.x
Published online: 1 January 2007

To the Editor: To control the modern epidemics of preventable disease, Australia’s dietary guidelines recommend moderation in four nutritional areas — fat, saturated fat, sugar and salt. In spite of this, the obesity and diabetes epidemics seem unstoppable.1 This is hardly surprising — these guidelines seldom reach the public, and they recommend “moderation” without defining it.

  • 1 University of Tasmania, Menzies Research Institute, Hobart, TAS.
  • 2 School of Health Sciences, Deakin University, Melbourne, VIC.
  • 3 Baker Heart Research Institute, Melbourne, VIC.


Competing interests:

Malcolm Riley is the Nutrition Manager for Dairy Australia.

  • 1. Zimmet PZ, James WPT. The unstoppable obesity and diabetes juggernaut. Med J Aust 2006; 185: 187-188. <MJA full text>
  • 2. UK Food Standards Agency. Signposting. (accessed Aug 2006).
  • 3. Joint National Committee. The seventh report of the Joint National Committee on Prevention, Detection, Evaluation, and Treatment of High Blood Pressure. JAMA 2003; 289: 2560-2572.
  • 4. Sacks FM, Svetkey LP, Vollmer WM, et al. Effects on blood pressure of reduced dietary sodium and the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet. N Engl J Med 2001; 344: 3-10.
  • 5. Riley MD, Beard TC. Choose foods low in salt. In: National Health and Medical Research Council. Dietary guidelines for Australian adults. Canberra: NHMRC, 2003: 133-150. (accessed Nov 2006).


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