Americans think their diet healthy, poll shows it's not

Jan 04, 2011

Nine in 10 Americans say their diet is healthy but only a quarter limit the amount of fat or sugar they eat, and two-thirds don't eat enough fruit and vegetables, a poll published Tuesday found.

"Americans tend to give themselves high marks for healthy eating, but when we asked how many , , and fruits and veggies they consumed, we found that their definition of was questionable," said Nancy Metcalf of Consumer Reports Health, which conducted the poll.

Of the 1,234 American adults polled, 89.7 percent said their diet was "somewhat" (52.6 percent), "very" (31.5 percent), or "extremely" healthy (5.6 percent.)

But 43 percent of the survey respondents said they drank at least one sugary soda or other sweetened drink every day, and just one in four said they limited sweets, sugars or fats in their diet, the poll conducted in early November found.

Four in 10 Americans said they ate "pretty much everything" or "mostly everything" that they wanted, the poll found.

Few count calories or weigh themselves, but when they were asked to self-report their weight, four in 10 were off-track.

A third said they were at a healthy weight when they actually had a (BMI) of an overweight or obese person, while eight percent thought they were overweight or obese, but their BMIs suggested they were not.

One in three US adults is obese, and losing weight is the second most popular new year's resolution this year after , according to a poll published last week by the Marist College Institute for Public Opinion.

Three in 10 Americans surveyed by Consumer Reports said they eat five or more servings of fresh fruit or daily, as recommended by health officials.

When they were asked why they didn't eat more vegetables, the most common reason given by the poll respondents was that they thought they consumed enough already.

The next most commonly cited reason for not eating the recommended amount of veggies was that they are hard to store or spoil too quickly -- an excuse given by 29 percent of Americans.

Seventeen percent said someone in their household didn't like vegetables, the same number said vegetables take too long to prepare or are too difficult to prepare, and 14 percent said fresh vegetables are too expensive.

Thirteen percent said, quite simply, they don't like vegetables.

Explore further: Research examines relationship between domestic abuse and football

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Dietary factors appear to be associated with diabetes risk

Jul 28, 2008

Drinking more sugar-sweetened beverages or eating fewer fruits and vegetables both may be associated with an increased risk of type 2 diabetes, whereas eating a low-fat diet does not appear to be associated with any change ...

Parents can learn to raise vegetable lovers

May 15, 2007

Teaching children that vegetables are tasty as well as good for them can be a true parenting challenge. But by following a few simple tips, parents can increase the chances that their kids develop a taste for healthy, nutritious ...

Recommended for you

Health care organizations see value of telemedicine

Nov 27, 2014

(HealthDay)—Health care organizations are developing and implementing telemedicine programs, although many have yet to receive reimbursement, according to a report published by Foley & Lardner.

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.