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Health Reports Don’t Change Consumer Attitudes

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woman-eating-meatHistory shows studies and conclusions such as the one by the World Health Organization on processed foods and red meats have little impact on consumer behavior. The NDP group, which has tracked eating habits and behaviors for more than 30 years, has researched the effect of similar studies. Using history as a predictor of future consumption behavior, NPD analyzed consumption behaviors after a 2002 American Cancer Society report recommended that consumers limit their consumption of processed and red meats, especially those high in fat. The ACS report cited studies that found populations with diets high in fruits and vegetables and low in animal fat, meat, or calories have a reduced risk of some of the most common types of cancer.

ACS estimated that in the United States, about 35 percent of cancer deaths could be avoidable through dietary modification. But through analysis, There was no discernible difference in the consumption of processed and red meats or many of the other animal proteins tracked after the guidelines were released. Analyst Darren Seifer said “What our analysis shows is that we humans are creatures of habit for the most part, and are slow to change.”