Cash-Poor, Food-Rich?

Until now, research has indicated that obesity is an especially big problem in low-income populations because they don’t have access to healthy food. But a new study of UK families suggests that just ain’t true, the Australian reports.

The 3,500-person study—one of the largest ever to look at the eating habits of the UK’s poorest families, according to the paper—”found the nutritional value of the food eaten by the poorest 15 per cent in society was little different from the average.” In addition, the research showed,

the rate of obesity, which has often been linked to poverty, was at a similar level among the poor as it is in the general population. The poorest families were consuming similar amounts of saturated fat, but were eating slightly more sugar and slightly less fruit and vegetables.

But if the “average” across the pond is anything like the average American diet (and anecdotal evidence suggests that it is), is it really any good to be eating “slightly more” than boatloads of sugar, and “slightly less” than very few fruits and vegetables? It sounds to me like the poorest families still have it worse.