Grocery purchases didn't get much healthier from 1998-2006. In fact, the percentage spent on fruits and vegetables went down slightly while packaged foods went up. (Courtesy USDA)
This is the time of year I try to watch what I eat. But maybe what happens to me also happens to you: as I file through the family buffet I watch closely as my plate piles up to overflowing.
Then I watch a slice of pecan cozy up next to that lonesome slice of apple pie. Wait. How long has that scoop of vanilla been there?
For those of us planning to hit the reset button on Jan. 1, a report from the USDA offers a worthwhile reality check. Even before you watch what goes on your plate, you ought to watch what goes into your shopping cart.
Researchers scored the food that went into shoppers’ carts against the USDA’s dietary guidelines. A shopper following all of the guidelines would score 100. On average, according to the study, American grocery shoppers scored 56.4.