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Expert weighs in on McDonald's calorie posting

Category: Heart Health and Cholesterol

As consumption of too much fast food has been known to lead to individuals receiving bad news from cholesterol tests, McDonald's restaurants announced they would be attaching a calorie list to their menus. Representatives from the company have said they hope customers' ability to better understand the caloric content of menu items may improve their health.

A researcher among the many experts who have commented on the decision by McDonald's, who studies mass media's influence on health habits, applauded the company's decision. However, he noted that the restaurants will need to do more if they're really concerned about their customers' health.

"This important move will not magically solve the obesity epidemic. Calorie-only labels leave out important information about the health and safety of fast food, including the large amount of sodium found in many of McDonald's menu items," said Jeff Niederdeppe, a professor of communication at Cornell University College of Agriculture and Life Sciences.

Excess calories can be converted into fat, which contributes to unhealthy amounts of cholesterol in the bloodstream. Smoking, poor exercise habits and high blood pressure also raise the likelihood of unfavorable results from cholesterol testing, according to the Mayo Clinic.

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