The Center for Disease Control (CDC) reported some good news for nutrition activists and others hoping to help Americans eat healthier. A new study found that American adults are consuming fewer calories from fast food than they were several years ago.
In 2006, American consumed approximately 13 percent of calories from fast food. Data from 2010 found that adults consumed about 11 percent of their daily calories from fast food. This data included foods such as hamburgers and French fries, known for their high fat content. This is certainly a step in the right direction. Especially since two-thirds of American adults are either overweight or obese.
Here are some additional findings from the study:
- Heavier people ate more calories from fast food than people who are normal weight.
- Blacks consumed more fast food calories than both whites and Hispanics.
- Black adults ages 20 to 39 had the highest rates of fast food consumption.
- Americans 60 and over ate less fast food than younger adults ages 20 to 39.
During this time, caloric intake among adults did not change during these years. A separate study reported that caloric intake among kids has decreased, revealing some more good news. This is the first decline in calorie intake among kids in more than 40 years.
Efforts such as first lady Michelle Obama’s Let’s Move! Campaign may be paying off. As I told the Christian Science Monitor, “The take-home message is that public education messages to eat less [fast food] are working … We are shifting toward healthier options.” Here are some thoughts that I share with USA Today, “Fast-food places continue to sell high-calorie items — many meals contain half a day’s worth of calories — but they are offering some lower-calorie items as well. Get the smallest size possible of everything from burgers to fries to soda so that you take in the fewest calories.”
Additional tips that I share with clients are:
- Drink water instead of the soda.
- Skip the double and triple burgers.
- Order a salad with dressing on the side.
- Eat slowly.
- Enjoy your company.