Convenience, Not Cost, Causes Weight Gain

by in Food News, September 11, 2012

fast food
When I heard the results of this recent study, I wasn’t too surprised. For years, I’ve been privately counseling folks who fall both above and below the poverty line. I’ve seen the patterns and am glad there is now statistical data to prove it. Cost has always been blamed for poor eating habits, but it’s the middle class folks who are most obese. They’re spending their hard earned money on fast food and other convenience cuisine.

The Stats
Findings for the 2005-2008 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) found:

  • Thirty million (or 41%) of obese adults have an income at or above 250% of the poverty level and over 28 million (39%) of obese adults have incomes between 130%-350% of the poverty level while fifteen million adults (20%) of obese adults have an income below 130% of the poverty level.
  • For men, there was no significant difference between education level and the prevalence of obesity. For women, however, the prevalence of obesity increased as education level decreased.
  • Middle income folks eat at fast food joints most often while 80% of those with a low income cook at home at least 5 times a week.

What Does This Mean?
What these statistics could be telling us is kind of scary. Many middle-income families survive by having both parents work. This makes it tougher (but not impossible) for mom or dad to cook dinner. Instead, they opt for the convenience of fast food joints to make it quick and easy to feed their family. Even more interesting is that these folks know very well that they aren’t making the healthiest food decisions.

What’s To Be Done?
There are many steps that can be taken on various levels:

  • Families: Mom and dad probably understand the consequences of their actions. What they probably don’t know is that you CAN cook super quick and healthy meals at home (even if you’re exhausted from work).  Careful planning is also imperative—such as cooking double batches so you can freeze half for later.
  • Restaurants: Although we have seen some action taken, more establishments need to offer healthy AND delicious options. This also goes for mom-and-pop joints. In addition, having the nutrition information available at these smaller locations (not just chain restaurants) can help folks make healthier choices.
  • Convenience foods: Markets that sell convenience foods (like tuna salad or ready to cook marinated chicken) should offer options that go along with the MyPlate guidelines. Having the nutrition information available for these options could also help families make healthier choices.

TELL US: In light of this information, how do you think obese folks families can become healthier?

Toby Amidor, MS, RD, CDN, is a registered dietitian , consultant and owner of Toby Amidor Nutrition, Inc., who specializes in food safety and culinary nutrition. See Toby’s full bio »

More posts from .

Similar Posts

FDA Says: Menu Calorie Counts are Headed Your Way

Soon, thanks to new FDA regulations, it will prove significantly more challenging to ignore how many calories are lurking in the foods on the menus at...

Comments (899)

  1. Related……

    […]just beneath, are numerous totally not related websites to ours, however, they are surely worth going over[…]……

  2. Websites worth visiting…

    […]here are few links to websites that we link to because we think they are worth visiting[…]……

  3. Websites we think you should visit…

    […]although websites we backlink to below are considerably not related to ours, we feel they are actually worth a go through, so have a look[…]……

  4. Related……

    […]just beneath, are numerous totally not related websites to ours, however, they are surely worth going over[…]……

  5. 0800 072 4556…

    […]Every the moment in a whilst we pick out blogs that we read. Listed beneath are the newest sites that we pick […]…

  6. Great website…

    […]we like to honor many other internet sites on the web, even if they aren’t linked to us, by linking to them. Under are some of them worthed to try[…]……

  7. Sources…

    […]check below, are some totally unrelated websites to ours, however, they are most trustworthy sources that we use[…]……

  8. Websites worth visiting…

    […]here are some links to sites that we link to because we think they are worth visiting[…]……

  9. Blogs ou should be reading…

    […]Here is a nice artice You Might Find Interesting that we Encourage You to visit[…]……

  10. Dreary Day…

    It was a dreary day here today, so I just took to piddeling around on the internet and found…

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>