The NPD Group Reports on Low-Carb's Impact on America's Diet
NPD's New Study Finds Actual Carb Consumption is Higher Than Expected
PORT WASHINGTON, NEW YORK, April 5, 2004 - Despite all of the attention on low-carbs in this country, The NPD Group's new Report on Carbohydrate Consumption Patterns finds Americans still have a very healthy appetite for carbs. Virtually none of the 11,000 people we studied were cutting carbs to the degree that low-carb diets recommend. In fact, among people who say they are on low-carb diets, only one out of four is actually significantly cutting carbs.
The NPD Group's latest study tracked the eating patterns of 11,000 adults. Only a small fraction of the population actually followed a lower-carb diet. NPD found that the adults who are cutting carbs are still eating an average of 128 refined carbs* a day. For men the average is 145 refined grams and for women it's 109 grams. That's considerably higher than the 20 to 50 grams of carbs per day some low-carb diets recommend for weight loss, although still lower than the overall average of 210 grams of refined carbs a day for all adults.
"Everybody in the food industry has the potential to be positively or negatively impacted by this low-carb phenomenon. This report sheds some light on how big of an impact the low-carb craze is going to have on certain businesses and products in the food industry," said Anne Mixen, the author of NPD's Carbohydrate Consumption Patterns Study. "There aren't any studies out there that look at what people are really adding to and cutting from their diet and how many carbs they are actually consuming," said Mixen.
Who's Cutting Carbs
Some highlights of the report include:
"Low-carb diets are a fad, just like the low-fat craze of the late 80's and 90's, the question is how long will it last," said Harry Balzer, vice president of The NPD Group. "In the meantime, every manufacturer will put out their version of low-carb products and Americans will try them because that's what we do, we like to try new things. People still want to lose weight by eating, but getting people to change their behavior is very difficult to do," said Balzer.
The NPD Group's Report on Carbohydrate Consumption Patterns
*Refined Carbohydrates=total carbs minus dietary fiber.
About The NPD Group, Inc.
NPD Foodworld®, a division of The NPD Group, is the leading provider of food consumption patterns at restaurants and at home. NPD provides sales and marketing information for manufacturers, operators and retailers in the food, beverage and foodservice industries. Only NPD Foodworld provides a complete picture of what Americans are really eating - both at home and in restaurants. Today more than 90-percent of the nation's leading food and beverage manufacturers and restaurant operators rely on NPD Foodworld.
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