A poor diet not only spells disaster for general health but it could also be a leading cause of deaths all over the world. If a new study is to be believed, consuming unhealthy foods regularly and not eating enough healthy foods can wreak more harm than smoking cigarettes! The finding, which was published in the international medical journal, The Lancet, observed and assessed the consumption of major foods and nutrients across 195 countries among adults over the age of 25.
The relationship between sub optimal diet and the rate of mortality was studied carefully. Over 130 scientists from around 40 countries took part in the analysis and the results are shocking enough to push you towards a healthy diet immediately.
A healthy diet is synonymous to good health. 'We are what we eat' - we have heard this a gazillion times. The saying lays stress on watching our diet carefully as it is the basis of our overall well being. As good food helps us maintain a good health, bad food can do the exact opposite.
The study reveals that poor diets caused 10.9 million deaths (22% of all deaths) among adults in the year 2017 while smoking was responsible for 8.0 million deaths. It further divulges that 50% of the diet-related deaths were caused due to low intake of healthy foods. Specifically, 3 kinds of feeding habits were held responsible for such a harsh impact on people's health.
The Three Bad Diets Linked To High Mortality Rate Are -
Low intake of whole grains
Low intake of fruits
High consumption of sodium
And the foods that are linked to high death rates (one in every five deaths globally) are - red meat, processed meats, sugar-sweetened beverages, and trans fatty acids among other foods.
It was also found out during a survey for the study that the biggest gap between an optimal diet and a bad diet is usually caused by the dearth of milk, whole gains and nuts and seeds.
Researchers pointed out a glaring fault in the general dietary perception of the people - We lay too much emphasis on restricting the consumption of unhealthy foods. While a good dietary strategy should focus more on including a good amount of healthy foods.
Other than encouraging people to put more healthy foods on their plate, it is also important to direct food and beverage industry to regulate their manufacturing norms and produce cleaner foods with less trans fats, chemicals, additives and sugar. Only a collective effort by the producers and the consumers can lead to a healthy and sustainable living.