A new study from Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health, published November 2, showed that while recent improvements in the U.S. diet have helped reduce disease and premature death, the overall American diet is still poor.
- Researchers analyzed how changes in dietary quality from 1999 to 2012 impacted disease and premature death, and found that during that time span healthier eating habits cumulatively prevented 1.1 million premature deaths and resulted in 12.6 percent fewer type 2 diabetes cases, 8.6 percent fewer cardiovascular disease cases, and 1.3 percent fewer cancer cases.
- However, the study authors said that overall dietary quality in the U.S. is far from optimal, noting that study participants’ average healthy eating score — on a scale ranging from 0 (unhealthiest) to 110 (healthiest) — never reached 50.
Coverage from HSPH News, featuring Walter Willett, Frank Hu, Stephanie Chiuve and Yanping Li
Coverage from Harvard Gazette, featuring Walter Willett, Frank Hu, Stephanie Chiuve and Yanping Li