Americans Find Cost of Food Biggest Barrier to a Healthy Diet, Survey Finds

In a survey conducted by the Cleveland Clinic in the United States, almost half of the respondents cited the cost of food as the biggest obstacle to following a healthy diet.

In addition, the survey found that one in 10 Americans consider fast food the most heart-healthy diet, with parents twice as likely to opt for a fast food diet than non-parents.

Another significant barrier for Americans when opting for a healthy eating pattern is the lack of time for preparing healthy meals, cited by 23 percent of the participants.

One in five survey respondents also cited a lack of awareness about appropriate cooking procedures as a barrier to healthy eating, even though 70% said they cook at home at least four times a week.

“In today’s fast-paced world, Americans are pressed for time, and as a consequence, heart-healthy diet and exercise choices may be impacted,” Cleveland Clinic said in a press release. 

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the national public health agency of the United States, says heart disease is the most common cause of death among men, women and people of most racial and ethnic groups in the United States.

On the other hand, the dietician attributed the low level of awareness Americans exhibited of the Mediterranean diet’s health benefits to a lack of information.

“[The fact that only 15 percent of respondents were familiar with the heart-healthy benefits of the Mediterranean diet] was very surprising to me,” she said.