Google's New Nutrition Data Base


better than google glasses?

First it was maps, then it was email and chat, pics, file storage, and now food– making the world more convenient one step at a time, Google has announced  that it is adding nutrition information to its already wide array of search features. The intuitive new search will make it easy for users to glean nutritional data on thousands of foods and beverage items with a few simple swipes of a smartphone.
Greatist explains how to use the new food function,  “You enter a question about the nutritional content of a food or drink (for example: “How many calories are in a banana?” or “How much sugar is in a cupcake?”) and hit search. The answer will show up in a box at the top of the results, with the option to change the serving size for even more accurate information. Below Google’s result, the standard search results page appears with links to other sources and websites if you’d like a second opinion.”

Google’s nutrition database will contain a wide array of nutrient info, including calorie, protein, fat, carbohydrate, sodium, vitamin and mineral content. All information comes from the United States Department of Agriculture. “This new nutritional information builds on our work on the Knowledge Graph,” The Official Google Search Blog explains, “which brings together all kinds of information from across the web that wasn’t easily accessible. The graph helps us connect things that are related, even in cases when those foods have a completely different sounding name from what you asked. For example, when you ask for “summer squash carbs,” we include “zucchini” as a relevant food in the dropdown, because it is a type of summer squash.”

Right now, the feature only contains info on about a thousand everyday items, but Google says it plans to add more continually. Could Google’s nutrition data become an app we rely on in daily life  the way Google Maps is a go-to for most folks? (And if so, what will its phrasing be?!?) — Casandra Armour

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