Surprisingly, a study was necessary to reveal an undeniable truth: education and socioeconomic status of people influence their dietary behavior. In short, an unhealthy diet is linked to poor education, as a new study concluded.
A meta-analysis led by Dr. Holly Rippin, a former postgraduate researcher in the School of Food Science and Nutrition at Leeds and currently a WHO consultant, pointed to the conclusion that eating healthy is a concept that needs cognitive development and financial means.
Scientists from the University of Leeds researched with the support and collaboration of the World Health Organization Regional Office for Europe (WHO Europe). Data from 27,334 individuals from 12 European countries say that poor diet is linked to obesity, hypertension, and cardiovascular disease. These are also some of the leading causes of death in the regions that were scrutinized.
“Strategies supporting education in lower education groups and lower-income countries could be effective in improving nutrition, particularly in disadvantaged groups,” said Rippin.
New Research Links Poor Education to an Unhealthy Diet
“We hope that policymakers across Europe will use this information to inform their nutrition policies in the future and prioritize these vulnerable groups,” added Co-author Janet Cade, professor of nutritional epidemiology and public health at Leeds.
But is that a surprise? Isn’t it common sense? Was a meta-analysis necessary to understand this? Or is it just another bureaucratic measure required for measures to be taken? We live in the 21st century. When were the disadvantaged groups well-fed?
To give up an unhealthy diet, people need to understand nutrition. Nutrition is a science. It means that people need to be educated to practice it right. The question being: how well can uneducated people be educated to adopt healthy dietary habits consciously? It looks like only a manipulative strategy will work.
It also means they need different incomes to afford it. If the only measure was taken is education, and people are only going to be manipulated to eat healthily. Still, they won’t have the financial resources to accept being manipulated, and then there is no point in trying. It means that governments should do something and make healthy food affordable also, we think. For now, the study links an unhealthy diet to poor education, without addressing the financial issues.