Data intended to inform dietary policies directed at reducing chronic disease, obesity rates
They saw an increase in consumption of healthy foods and nutrients in high and middle-income countries, but little increase in low-income countries. The authors suggest that the positive changes may be due to better storage, transport and availability of out-of-season foods worldwide in higher income countries, improvements in agricultural practices and increased recognition of the importance of healthier diets to minimize diet-related, non-communicable diseases such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
“At the same time, we saw an even stronger association between national incomes and unhealthy diet patterns,” said first author Fumiaki Imamura, Ph.D., a senior investigator scientist at the MRC Epidemiology Unit. “In other words, people in high income countries, and increasingly middle income countries, are among the biggest consumers of unhealthy foods.”