9 Oct :"Read them before you eat them" is the new slogan in the New York Health Department campaign to control fast increasing obesity in the city, partly because of high calorie fast foods.
One reason for the campaign is that obesity can lead to several diseases including diabetes and heart problems which cost the medical system heavily.
The chain restaurants are legally bound to post calorie count on food items they have on their menus but the officials feel that the consumers are not giving adequate attention to the number of calorie an item contains.
Five ads will appear over next three months in subway cars emphasising how deceptive the appearances are so far as foods are concerned and also advise customers that a typical adult needs only 2000 calories.
One ad shows an apple raisin muffin that looks harmless but contains 450 calories or about one quarter of daily allowance.
"If you are eating it as a snack, you may want to split it with a friend," says director of Health Department’s Physical activity, Cathy Nonas.
"Many people end up overweight just by going with the flow," Nonas said.
"Now that this information is available in chain restaurants, it’s easy to make healthier choices. Once you set a daily calorie budget, there are lots of ways to live within it."