A new study has found that the similarities between fast food and restaurant food are plenty, citing the health gap between them isn’t big.During a recent study, researchers have come to know that consuming food items offered by restaurants results in increased calorie, sodium and fat consumption compared to meals prepared at home, irrespective of the fact whether they are from fast food centers or from better establishments.
According to the study’s author, the findings of this new study are indicating that public health interventions that target the population’s overall dining-out behavior instead of focusing just on frequency of fast food consumption might be warranted for improving the eating habits of the Americans.
Prof. Ruopeng An, who teaches community health and kinesiology at the University of Illinois in Urbana, Champaign, pointed out that previously people used to equate fast food with junk food. He added that people, however, don’t have much information about the food served at full-service restaurants. According to him, no one knows whether restaurant food is healthier or better than fast food or the food made and eaten at home.
You can read the entire study by visiting the European Journal of Clinical Nutrition. The study is based on data offered by the National Health & Nutrition Examination Survey or NHANES. This survey gathers dietary and health information from a representative sample of the US population on a regular basis.
This survey had over 18,000 adults as participants, each of whom had to answer questions about the kinds of food they have consumed during a two-day period. Around one-third of these 1800 individuals said that they have eaten fast food on any one or both the days. Another one fourth, on the other hand, reported that they have eaten food made at a full-service restaurant at least on one day.
When compared with participants who ate home-cooked food, individuals visiting fast food outlets were found to consume 190 more calories per day on an average. In addition, people belonging to the second category consumed 10 mg more cholesterol, 300 mg more sodium and 3.5 gram more saturated fat per day than individuals belonging to the first category.
Participants eating at full-service restaurants, on the other hand, were found to consume 187 more calories per day than those eating home-cooked food. The daily sodium, saturated fat and cholesterol intake of people eating at restaurants were respectively 400 mg, 2.5 g and 60 mg more than those eating food prepared at home.
The above mentioned numbers allowed researchers to conclude that there’s not much difference between eating fast food and restaurant food.