As part of a settlement with US regulators, fried chicken company KFC, a unit of US fastfood group Yum! Brands, has said it will not make unsupported health claims in the future.

The US Federal Trade Commission has said it would fine the company US$11,000 per violation if KFC made any health claims in the future, unless the company can support the claims with scientific evidence, reported Reuters.

The case followed a series of KFC advertisements that claimed fried chicken could form part of a healthy diet.

One advert claimed two KFC chicken breasts were healthier than the Whopper burger made by fastfood rival Burger King. Another portrayed fried chicken as a low-carbohydrate, high-protein food that could form part of a low-carb diet.

The FTC said that although two KFC fried chicken breasts have a slightly lower fat content than a BK Whopper, they have more than three times the trans fat and cholesterol, more than twice the sodium and more calories. The FTC added that fried chicken was not suitable for a low-carb diet as the Atkins and South Beach diets both advise against eating breaded, fried foods.

In response KFC said it considered the adverts to be “truthful and factually accurate” and apologised if consumers had misinterpreted them.

“In order to put this matter behind us, we’ve entered into an agreement with the FTC without admitting any wrongdoing, and we won’t be running these two ads again,” the company’s was quoted by Reuters as saying.