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Race, Location Big Factors in American Diets
Date:3/14/2012

cause or the blame for disease."

When it comes to helping people change their eating habits, dietary patterns are also more useful than labeling foods as "good" and "bad," Diekman added.

The next step is to look at the relationship between these dietary patterns and health, in particular stroke risk. "I'll be surprised if we don't see an association," Judd said.

If further research shows an association, it would provide some foods to target, similar to how the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is working to reduce sodium in the food supply, Judd said.

"Even from just what is here [in this study], it certainly will add to the body of evidence that's encouraging the change in sodium, portions, and the increased need for education around nutrition and physical activity," Diekman said.

Because this study was presented at a medical meeting, the data and conclusions should be viewed as preliminary until published in a peer-reviewed journal.

More information

There's more on healthy eating at the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

SOURCES: Suzanne Judd, Ph.D., assistant professor, University of Alabama at Birmingham; Connie Diekman, M.Ed., R.D., director, university nutrition, Washington University in St. Louis; March 13, 2012, presentation, American Heart Association scientific sessions, San Diego


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