Food Traffic Light Calculator
Demonstration Version 2
This page is part of an amateur
website devoted to promoting and displaying low sodium products www.findlowsaltfood.info
Dr Trevor Beard points out that Traffic Light food labels would make low
easier to find. Every low salt food in the
no others—would have a green light for salt! His
website has an article on Traffic Lights with an attached PDF.
Britain invented Traffic Light food labels to help
people control overweight, obesity, Type 2 diabetes, high
pressure, stroke, coronary heart disease and several dozen other
preventable health problems that damage the health of so many
people—and may kill people—even before they retire.
Prevention requires a healthy lifestyle (enough exercise and not too
much alcohol) and a healthy diet (less fat, saturated fat, sugar and
salt). Avoid the red lights for fat, saturated fat, sugar and
Stick to amber (in moderation) and green (eat freely).
Here is where sticking to green lights all the time can make such a big
Could Australia have Traffic Light labels?—Yes.
If enough people knew about these Traffic Light labels Australia could
have them too. This game shows you and your children how they
Colours shown by the calculator are for
foods (not drinks) and and based on the nutrient levels only.
The UK system also takes the amount of a nutrient in a portion into
account and the source of the sugar however in this demonstration they are not dealt
with. The UK
recommendation is that labels also show the level of
nutrients and the nutritional criteria the colours are based on. For
official information see www.food.gov.uk.
The calculator is based on the
current UK per 100g boundaries
as set out below.
120mg & below
conversion of salt to sodium was based on the approximate
method used by the UK Food Standards Agency where 1000mg of sodium = 2.5g of salt.
The figures that
are set into the calculator came from a packet of Sanitarium
Lite-Bix (pictured below). Press the SHOW
to see how Lite-Bix might look in a UK supermarket. Traffic Lights
would give it the legitimate advertising it has so richly deserved in
Australia for over 15 years and never received.
Then try entering the data from the Nutrition information Panels of the breakfast foods you
other foods in your pantry. The tab key speeds entry.
If you want to label drinks, the current UK per 100mL
boundaries are set out below.
120mg & below
The boundaries were taken from Front of Pack
Nutritional Signpost Labelling Technical Guidance issue 2 November 2007 Published by the UK Food Standards Agency. For
updated and further information visit their website. Values with * were changed from issue 1 www.food.gov.uk
A Project for budding nutritionists.
Budding nutritionists can see the power of Traffic Light
food labels by sticking them on a few of the foods in the pantry.
First they need to print out a sheet of blank labels which also comes with a shopping reminder for the parents.