No, restaurants should not be required to list calories and fat grams on their menus. If restaurants were required to do this, then patrons would be less likely to go out as it would take them all night to read the menu and the menu would be hundreds of pages thick, most likely. In the United States, especially, people love to eat out and when they do, they pretty much know where they are headed, what they are going to be eating, whether or not it is going to be fattening, etc., etc. Most sit down, casual and fine dining restaurants are going to be offering dessert to its patrons, so why bother to require them to list calories and fat grams on their menus. Going out for dinner or any meal during the day should be for enjoyment, not for knowing if you are clogging your arteries and worrying about it.
On a more serious note, the government would find some way to make it mandatory for restaurants to list calories and fat grams on their menus. In the United States, the government finds itself in a predicament. There have been so many surveys and reports of high rates of obesity, that it might come down to the fact that restaurants are going to have to list these statistics on their menus. It will come down to the fact that restaurants will have to offer more healthier items than heavier and greasier items. Restaurants are already beginning to do this and they have been doing this, even without listing the calorie and fat grams on their menus. Restaurants like McDonald’s, Burger King and Subway print extra pamphlets comparing the different items that they offer and this is done because they want to do it. No one outside of the corporate influence is telling them to do so.
It would also be a waste of time to list the calories and fat grams for some casual and fine dining establishments. Patrons are not going to a restaurant to read the menu as if it is a newspaper. They are going to a restaurant with friends and/or loved ones or for a meeting and most likely have some kind of idea what they are going to order regardless of the caloric and fat gram content. People do not go out every night to eat, but they do go out enough and are familiar with the restaurant where they are going and they are going to order regardless of the meal. Going out to eat is more of a luxury and not a way to find out if you can lose weight or not.
Recently, however, people have been watching a bit more closely what they are eating due to increase in heart disease and cancer. We do hear that both of these killers have been declining, but honestly, this writer does not see that. Due to increased financial hardship, people may be smoking more and eating more to hide their stress.
So, restaurants should not be required to list calories and fat grams on their menus because people really just do not care to some degree about what they are eating. At the same time, restaurant owners should not be controlled by the government by what they are serving as long as the food is prepared according to regulations of the local health departments.