Navigation Links
Perception Does Not Equal Reality When It Comes to Knowledge About Nutrient Intake: 2013 IFIC Functional Foods Survey Reveals Nutrient Shortfalls Among Americans

Washington, DC (PRWEB) October 02, 2013

Nearly 8 in 10 Americans (79 percent) say they are at least somewhat knowledgeable about nutrition, but new research from the International Food Information Council shows several wide gaps between their perception of the adequacy of their diets and reality.

The 2013 International Food Information Council Functional Foods Consumer Survey reveals that despite consumers’ reported knowledge about nutrition, the majority (67 percent) believe they fall short of meeting “all or nearly all” of their nutrient needs. “Functional foods” are defined as foods that have benefits beyond basic nutrition—such as blueberries, yogurt, and fortified milk, bread or cereal.

The survey also shows significant disconnects between people’s beliefs about whether they are getting sufficient amounts of many specific nutrients and the reality of their diets, as judged by the Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs) recommended by experts.

A comparison between the survey’s findings about perceptions of diet adequacy (by specific nutrient) and National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) data shows wide chasms between how many believe their intakes are adequate versus the actual DRIs. For nutrients such as vitamin D (68 percent perception vs. 32 percent consumption), potassium (61 percent vs. less than 3 percent), and fiber (67 percent vs. 5 percent), the discrepancy between perception and reality is quite stark. The high percentage of consumers who are meeting their needs for B vitamins (60 percent perception vs. 90 percent consumption) is a testament to the value of functional foods, especially fortified foods, as providing a “functional fix.”

However, there are still gaps in knowledge and consumption of a variety of other functional components such as omega-3 fatty acids, lutein, flavonoids, and zeaxanthin. One third, or less, of the population say they are not consuming enough of these components to meet their needs or to get a health benefit.

It’s clear that Americans have an interest in functional foods. Similar to survey findings from 2009 and 2011, 90 percent of consumers in 2013 agree that certain foods have health benefits beyond basic nutrition (87 percent in 2011, and 89 percent in 2009).

“While there is some disparity between perceived nutrient adequacy and actual nutrient intake, it is notable that consumers recognize the benefits their food can offer,” says Sarah Romotsky, RD, Associate Director of Health and Wellness at the International Food Information Council Foundation. “Indeed, health-promoting foods and food components play an important role in meeting nutrient needs and improving overall health.”

Consumer interest in learning more about functional foods remains high. Almost 9 in 10 Americans (86 percent) are interested in learning more about foods that have health benefits beyond basic nutrition. Similar to 2011, almost half of all consumers (45 percent) are “very interested.”

Previous iterations of the survey revealed that even though consumers have a positive perception of functional foods, reported consumption of various functional components for health benefits remained stagnant. This year’s study further explored perceived barriers to functional foods. Respondents were offered a list of 16 potential reasons for not consuming more of these foods; on average, they selected 10 of those barriers, indicating that they perceive a variety of challenges. Specifically, price is the most common barrier, with more than half identifying it as a major reason. Other perceived barriers include skepticism of manufacturers’ motives for adding health components to products, preference for the purity of basic foods, and taste.

The 2013 Functional Foods Consumer Survey was fielded by Mathew Greenwald & Associates of Washington, D.C., between July 9 and July 22, 2013, and sampled 1,005 between ages 18 to 80. This is the eighth version of the survey dating back to 1998. Other topics in the survey include fortified foods, food processing, and behavioral determinants of functional food consumption.

For a copy of the 2013 IFIC Functional Foods Executive Research Report and other resources for journalists and bloggers, please visit the IFIC Foundation’s Media Resource Page.

For interview requests and any other questions, please contact the IFIC media team at 202-296-6540, Raymond(at)ific(dot)org or Matthews(at)ific(dot)org.

The International Food Information Council's (IFIC's) mission is to effectively communicate science-based information on food safety and nutrition to health and nutrition professionals, educators, journalists, government officials and others providing information to consumers. IFIC is supported primarily by the broad-based food, beverage and agricultural industries. IFIC and IFIC Foundation materials can be found on our Web site:

Read the full story at

Source: PRWeb
Copyright©2012 Vocus, Inc.
All rights reserved

Related medicine news :

1. Setting blurred images in motion improves perception
2. Perception of marijuana as a safe drug is scientifically inaccurate
3. Study challenges popular perception of new hookup culture on college campuses
4. Penn Medicine researchers discover link between fear and sound perception
5. New BUSM study explores providers perceptions of parental concerns about HPV vaccination
6. Cosmetic Vaginal Surgeons, Dr. Miklos and Dr. Moore evaluate the preoperative perceptions and postoperative expectations of 550 patients who are considering a labiaplasty
7. Perceptions of health improve with pension receipt, researcher says
8. Depression after heart attack: Threat perception has to be addressed
9. Obese but happy gene challenges the common perception of link between depression and obesity
10. A new European network crosses the boundaries for excellence in language and perception research
11. Womens body talk: Perception stronger than reality?
Post Your Comments:
(Date:10/13/2017)... AR (PRWEB) , ... October 13, 2017 , ... ... with locations throughout Arkansas that offers insurance and financial preparation services, is providing ... the Rock City Rescue organization. , Rock City Rescue is a locally recognized ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... The International Association ... standards of excellence for the field of eating disorders, announces the opening of ... 2018 in Orlando, Florida at the Omni Resort at ChampionsGate. , ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... 13, 2017 , ... Apple Rehab Shelton Lakes , which specializes in ... the facility as part of a disaster drill on October 3rd. , Apple Rehab ... City Emergency Manager, as well as the Connecticut Long Term Care Mutual Aid ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... October 13, 2017 , ... Global Healthcare Management’s 4th Annual ... in Milford, NJ. This free event, sponsored by Global Healthcare Management’s CEO, Jon ... fun run is geared towards children of all ages; it is a non-competitive, non-timed ...
(Date:10/13/2017)... ... ... “The Journey: From the Mountains to the Mission Field”: the story of a ... “The Journey: From the Mountains to the Mission Field” is the creation of published ... all ages and currently teaches a class of ladies at her church, which she ...
Breaking Medicine News(10 mins):
(Date:9/25/2017)... --  Montrium , an industry leader in powerful ... Trial Master Files & Inspection Readiness Conference ( ... Services has selected eTMF Connect to ... a leading European contract research organization (CRO), will ... enable greater collaboration with sponsors, improve compliance and ...
(Date:9/23/2017)... Sept. 22, 2017 Janssen Biotech, Inc. (Janssen) ... letter from the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) ... sirukumab for the treatment of moderately to severely active ... clinical data are needed to further evaluate the safety ... active RA. ...
(Date:9/22/2017)... , Sept. 22, 2017 AVACEN Medical ... device is now successfully helping those with the widespread ... Fibromyalgia diagnosed Amanda in Essex, England ... and washing my hair, experiencing no sleep at all, ... painful spasm… I cannot recommend [the AVACEN 100] enough, ...
Breaking Medicine Technology: