More Than a Third of American Adults Eat Fast Food Daily

More Than a Third of American Adults Eat Fast Food Daily

Whatever your income bracket, fast food probably isn't doing your health any favors.

A government study has found that 1 in 3 US adults eat fast food on any given day.

Between 2013 and 2016, 36.6% of American adults said they ate fast food in the past 24 hours, according to interviews conducted through the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey. "Fast food has been associated with poor diet and increased risk of obesity".

"We focused on fast food for this report because fast food has played an important role in the American diet in recent decades", she said. Among middle-income families (whose income was between 130% and 350% of the poverty line), 36.4% ate fast food on a typical day.

After the age of 40, Americans' fast food consumption steadily declines, the study showed. And among high-income families (those with incomes above 350% of the poverty line), 42% dined on fast food on a typical day.

Every single day more than one third of Americans eat something that is widely known to cause all sorts of health issues - fast food. For non-Hispanic white adults, 37.6 percent consumed fast food on a given day, while 35.5 percent of Hispanic adults and 30.6 percent of non-Hispanic Asian adults did. Among men and women who consumed fast food, a higher percentage of men ate it for lunch, while a higher percentage of women ate it as a snack.

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When it came to gender, men were most likely to buy fast food for lunch, while women would purchase it as a quick and low-priced snack.

The percentage of adults who said they consumed fast food rose with family income level, according to the report. For instance, 44.9% of adults ages 20 to 39 said that they consumed fast food on a given day, compared with 37.7% of adults 40 to 59, and 24.1% of adults 60 and older. We do know that parents take their children, they say, because it's convenient, it's a good value, and their kids like the food. Black men consumed the most fast food, with almost 42 percent stating that they had eaten fast food in the past 24 hours. "Consumers can find nutritional information on calories on the menu in most fast food establishments and restaurants".

Weinandy says policies put in place at the federal level, similar to former first lady Michelle Obama's 'Let's Move!' campaign, could help this trend decrease.

'We know that people who are overweight or obese are more likely to be eating fast foods, but people really listen to their doctors, ' Weinandy said.

She adds that it's also up to primary care physicians to talk their patients about the dangers of eating too much fast food.

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