Jumping up and down like we won FIFA world cup. This is because according to a study published in the Lancet, Cameroon tops the list of countries with healthiest diets. Go Cameroon! Go Africa. Now can a Cameroonian start a food blog so people can learn how to cook Cameroonian food…
A new study has revealed that African countries such as Chad and Mali have some of the healthiest diets in the world, while the people in European countries including Belgium, Lativa and Hungary eat the worst.
Research published in The Lancet Global Health journal looked at the diets of almost 4.5 billion adults across 187 countries.
It found that although the worldwide consumption of healthy foods has increased during the last two decades, so has the the intake of unhealthy foods such as processed meat and sweetened drinks.
Between 1990 and 2010, high-income nations saw the most improvement in their diet quality as, on average, they reduced their consumption of unhealthy foods and ate more healthy products.
Despite this, people living in the wealthiest regions of these nations, such as Canada, Australia, Western Europe, and the US, have some of the poorest quality diets in the world, because they have the highest levels of unhealthy food consumption.
Whilst high income nations saw improvement over the last 20 years, countries like China and India have apparently seen no improvement in the quality of their diets.
The study found that people in the Mediterranean nations of Turkey and Greece largely consumed healthy foods, as did low-income countries such as Chad and Mali. Uzbekistan, Turkmenistan, Krgyzstan and other central European countries scored low for healthy food intake.
Researcher Dariush Mozaffarian said: “There is a particularly urgent need to focus on improving diet quality among poorer populations. If we do nothing, undernutrition will be rapidly eclipsed by obesity and non-communicable diseases, as is already been seen in India, China, and other middle income countries.”
Largely, it was found that African countries had the healthiest diets.
The study also found that, on average, women had better diets compared to men, and older adults better than younger ones.
Dr Fumiaki Imamura, from the University of Cambridge said: “By 2020, projections indicate that non-communicable diseases will account for 75 per cent of all deaths. Improving diet has a crucial role to play in reducing this burden.
“Our findings have implications for governments and international bodies worldwide. The distinct dietary trends based on healthy and unhealthy foods, we highlight, indicate the need to understand different, multiple causes of these trends, such as agricultural, food industry, and health policy. Policy actions in multiple domains are essential to help people achieve optimal diets to control the obesity epidemic and reduce non-communicable diseases in all regions of the world.”
Countries with the healthiest diets:
Countries with the unhealthiest diets: