WHO versus US FDA RDA Nutritional Information – Womens Horlicks

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So after purchasing a very nice-looking product from a local ethnic market – Horlick’s “Womens Horlicks”which as an interesting product category is the first Horlicks malted milk mix that excludes sweeteners of any kind (so that the individual can choose how much sugar or sweetener to add.)

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US FDA RDA Nutritional Information - Womens Horlicks
US FDA RDA Nutritional Information – Womens Horlicks

Curiosity led me to peel off the Import nutritional label mandated by the US Food and Drug Administration (FDA) which looks like this:

The World Health Organization (WHO) standard labeling is underneath the USDA label:

WHO World Health Org RDA Label - Womens Horlicks

USFDA RDA Nutrition Facts vs  | WHO Data
Serving Size: 3 tsp (30g)     |   Per 100g
Servings per Container: 11    |   --- 
Calories:         80          |   365
Calories from Fat: 0          |   ---
Total Fat         0g          |     1g
Saturated Fat:    0g          |   ---     
Trans Fat:        0g          |   ---     
Cholesterol:      0mg         |   ---     
Sodium:           100mg       |   ---     
Total Carbohydrate: 20g       |  72.8g
Fiber:            0g          |   ---     
Sugars:           0g          |     0g     
Protein:          0g          |   ---     
Ideal Quality Protein ---     |  15.0g
Vitamin A         2%          |   275mcg  33%
Vitamin C         20%         |  75.0 mg 100%
Calcium           40%         | 1666.7mg 100%
Iron              60%         |  49.0 mg 100%
Vitamin B1        ---         |    0.6mg  33%
Vitamin B2        ---         |    1.8mg 100% 
Vitamin B6        ---         |    2.2mg 100%
Vitamin B12       ---         |   4.0mcg 100%
Vitamin B4        ---         |      1mg  33%
Vitamin D         ---         |   2.8mcg  33%  
Vitamin K         ---         |   0.3mcg  33%
Folic Acid        ---         | 666.7mcg 100%
Magnesium         ---         |    121mg  33%
Zinc              ---         |    2.7mg  33%
Selenium          ---         |  14.3mcg  33%
Niacin            ---         |    7.7mg  33%
Biotin            ---         |  16.5mcg  33%
Pantothenic Acid  ---         |    2.8mg  33%
Iodine            ---         | 82.5 mcg  33%

US RDA Ingredients: Malt Extract, Milk Solids 
(Dry Milk Powder), Hydrolyzed Corn Solids, Calcium 
Carbonate, Salt, Cocoa Powder, Potassium Bicarbonate 
(Acidity Regulator), Ascorbic Acid (C), Nicotinamide 
(B3), Riboflavin (B2), Thiamine Mononitrate (Synth B1),
 Vitamin A Acetate, Vitamin D1, Vitamin B12.

WHO Ingredients: Malt Extract (40%), Milk Solids (35%),
 Hydrolysed Corn Solids, Minerals, Chocolate Powder, 
Cocoa Powder, Nature Identical Flavouring Substances, 
Salt, Acidity Regulator (INS501), Vitamins

Produced by GlaxoSmithKline Consumer Healthcare, Ltd. 
India under license from Horlicks Ltd. UK

And I, for one, find the differences fascinating.  I know the WHO standardized “Per 100g” so that consumers could judge intake between different kinds of foods regardless of serving size.  So if you take the US RDA x3, it approximates pretty well the WHO statistics.

You can see where the FDA insists on a break-down of any specific ingredients (“Minerals”, “Vitamins”) but omits any natural flavorings that may be part of another combined product (“Dry MIlk Powder”, “Cocoa Powder”).

The World Health Organization on the other hand, is quite specific in the nutritional content by vitamin or mineral element, and not so interested in Fat break-down or Sodium and Cholesterol content.

Neither organization is currently policing Genetically Modified Organism (GMO), organic or natural nomenclature, or processing information.

I find it interesting that the disclaimer portions of the label are quite different.  WHO warns, “Contains Nature Identical Flavouring Substances” presumably targeted to people worried about artificial flavorings and colorings (flavourings and colourings.)

US FDA warns, “Contains: Milk Powder” and “Made in a facility that uses treenuts, milk, eggs, soy, wheat and peanuts” presumably for allergenic purposes.

Which standard (WHO or US FDA) do you think gives you a better idea of what you’re eating?


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