WASHINGTON — Carbohydrates and carbonated soft drinks have taken a dive in American diets, according to a recent poll by Gallup. Nearly two-thirds of consumers say they avoid soda, and almost a third are cutting carbs. Additionally, more than half of consumers are shying away from sugar.
Gallup polled a random sample of 1,013 adults during July 7-10 to gauge consumption habits in the United States. The findings revealed an increase in the percentage of consumers banning soft drinks, from 41% in 2002 to 63%. Avoidance of sugar has reached a new high at 52%, compared with 43% in 2002.
Comparatively, 46% of consumers seek to shake salt from their diets, up slightly from 45% in 2002.
Avoidance of grains has grown from 6% in 2002 to 15% this year; however, 70% of consumers make an effort to eat them. Since 2002, the percentage of consumers ditching carbohydrates climbed from 20% to 29%, while 41% still strive to incorporate them.
Meanwhile, consumers are less frightened of fat, with 56% actively avoiding it compared with 62% in 2002. The percentage of those who try to include fat rose to 22% from 16% in 2002. And slightly fewer folks are banishing beef and other red meat, from 23% in 2002 to 22%.
Americans also are embracing vegetables, fruits and organic products. Nine out of ten consumers make a point to include produce on their plates, and 45% aim to eat organic. Despite an interest in healthy eating, however, the study notes consumers may not necessarily succeed in achieving that goal.“In a nation that struggles with obesity, Americans’ words about what they eat likely need to be followed up with actions,” Gallup said.