The Standard American Diet

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The saying goes, “you are what you eat.” Sadly, Americans fit this bill perfectly. Physicians have been throwing around a term called SAD, which stands for the Standard American Diet. What doctors have found is that most Americans consume foods that are:

  • High in animal fats
  • High in saturated fats
  • Low in fiber
  • High in processed foods
  • Low in complex carbohydrates
  • Low in plant-based foods
  • (source)

These foods all correlate with the major health problems in America: stroke, heart disease, high cholesterol and high blood pressure. When you think about it, this really isn’t that surprising. Americans have been growing more and more unhealthy since the Truman administration.The USDA reported that the average American today eats 57 more pounds of red meat and 22 more pounds of cheese than the average American living in the 1950s.

I don’t know how we fair against other cultures. Is it just that we are so unhealthy or that everyone else just exercises more? I know that Japan is having trouble child obesity linked to instant noodles. And, McDonald’s (or McDo’s) is very popular with the younger generations in France. Is the whole world getting fatter?

(I wrote this as I ate a cheeseburger.)

One Comment on “The Standard American Diet”

  1. You should read, “Omnivore’s Dilemma” or “Fastfood Nation” if you’re especially interested in this problem. It’s terrifying how meat factories operate and how they affect society in so many subtle ways!

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