Impact of foods with health logo on saturated fat, sodium and sugar intake of young Dutch adults

Public Health Nutr. 2011 Apr;14(4):635-44. doi: 10.1017/S1368980010002089. Epub 2010 Sep 15.


Objective: Health logos are introduced to distinguish foods with 'healthier' nutrient composition from regular foods. In the present study, we evaluated the effects of changed food compositions according to health logo criteria on the intake of saturated fat, sugar and sodium in a Dutch population of young adults.

Design: Foods in the Dutch food composition table were evaluated against nutrient criteria for logo eligibility. Three replacement scenarios were compared with the nutrient intake 'as measured' in the Dutch consumption survey. The foods not complying with health logo criteria were replaced either by 'virtual' foods exactly complying with the health logo criteria, with real 2007 market shares (scenario I) and 100% market shares (scenario II), or by existing similar foods with a composition that already complied with the health logo criteria (scenario III).

Results: The percentage reduction in nutrient intake with the current 2007 market shares of 'health logo foods' was -2.5% for SFA, 0% for sodium and -1% for sugar. With a 100% market share these reductions would be -10% for SFA, -4% for sodium and -6% for sugar. This may lead to a reduction of -40% for SFA, -23% for sodium and -36% for sugar in the most optimal replacement scenario.

Conclusions: With 'health logo foods', available in 2007 and current consumption patterns, small reductions can be achieved for SFA and sugar. For additional reductions, lowering the fat/sodium content of meat (products) towards health logo criteria and drinks without sugar towards limits far below health logo criteria would be the most effective reformulation strategy.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Dietary Fats / administration & dosage*
  • Dietary Sucrose / administration & dosage*
  • Energy Intake
  • Female
  • Food / classification*
  • Food / standards
  • Food Analysis
  • Food Labeling*
  • Food, Organic* / standards
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Netherlands
  • Nutrition Policy
  • Nutrition Surveys
  • Nutritive Value
  • Sodium, Dietary / administration & dosage*
  • Young Adult


  • Dietary Fats
  • Dietary Sucrose
  • Sodium, Dietary