Here’s how much fast food Americans are eating

Almost 40% of Americans Eat Fast Food on Any Given Day, Report Says

Almost half of American men - 48.3 percent - eat fast food for lunch on any given day.

More than a third of American adults-36.6%, to be exact-admitted to eating fast food on a given day between 2013 and 2016, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) revealed in a new study published this week.

The survey assesses the health of adults and children in the USA and tracks changes over time, looking at who eats it (age, income, gender) and how they eat it (where and when). Among middle-income families (whose income was between 130% and 350% of the poverty line), 36.4% ate fast food on a typical day.

"In addition, a higher percentage of non-Hispanic white adults consumed fast food than did non-Hispanic Asian adults".

It's the first federal study to look at how often adults eat fast food.

Additional reporting provided by Newsy affiliate CNN.

The conventional wisdom about fast food is that people eat it when they can't afford something better, due to a lack of money or a lack of time.

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The mainstays of take-outs - processed meat, sweetened bread, fried food and fatty sauces - are linked to chronic health conditions such as diabetes and heart failure, the number one killer in the world. And among high-income families (those with incomes above 350% of the poverty line), 42% dined on fast food on a typical day.

The CDC noted in its statement that fast food has been associated with a variety of problems, including elevated caloric intake and poor diet quality.

The report found that Americans tend to taper off fast foods as they age.

Still, the CDC said that fast food's ubiquity and price can make it an attractive option for some people.

Fast food consumption also varied by race, with black adults eating the highest amount at 42.4 percent. Only 24.1 percent of adults aged 60 and older consumed fast food, while 37.7 percent of adults ages 40 to 59 and 44.9 percent of adults aged 20 to 39 did. "Consumers can find nutritional information on calories on the menu in most fast food establishments and restaurants".

Although fast food is typically higher in unhealthy saturated fat, sodium and calories, it tends to be low in several key nutrients that adult bodies need to flourish and that children's bodies need to grow, said Liz Weinandy, a registered dietitian at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center, who was not involved in the new CDC report.

"When we see news clips of a shark swimming near a beach, it scares us into not going near that beach", Weinandy said. "However, what we should be scared of is double cheeseburgers, French fries and large amounts of sugary beverages", Weinandy said. "It takes time and some organization".

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