Do calorie numbers on menus make people eat healthier? 

In December 2015, all chain restaurants in the U.S. with more than 20 outlets will be required to post calorie amounts on restaurant menus and menu boards. In Canada, there is a mix of voluntary policies with mandatory regulations on the horizon in Ontario. Our work is evaluating the effectiveness of these policies.

 

Ottawa Hospital Labelling Study

In 2010, the Ottawa Hospital implemented the first comprehensive menu labelling in Canada. Calories, sodium, and fat amounts were posted on digital menu boards in two of the cafeterias. A quasi-experiment was conducted with 3,000 consumers before and after labelling was implemented at one of the cafeterias.

US-Canada labelling study

Will the new federal menu labelling regulations in the US change consumer behaviour when eating out? Are mandatory menu labelling regulations more effective than voluntary measures?

Experimental menu labelling studies

What is the best way to present nutrition information on menus? Are “traffic lights” or expressing calories in terms of physical activity energy equivalents more effective than numbers alone?

Health Check study: Voluntary menu labelling

Restaurants are increasingly adopting voluntary nutrition labelling programs. But are they effective? We evaluated the most prominent voluntary program in Canada: the Heart & Stroke Foundations Health Check restaurant program.

Menu Labelling Cohort Study

To our knowledge, this is the first study using a cohort study design to examine how menu labelling influences food choices. Did a calorie labelling intervention impact food choices in a university cafeteria?