New research shows people who eat canned foods typically have healthier diets and consume more essential nutrients. Canned foods are also recommended by nutrition experts nationwide as key to getting healthy family meals on the table more often.
The findings, based on an analysis of national eating trends and a survey of leading nutrition experts, revealed that canned foods are not only a staple in healthier diets, they are associated with higher intakes of fruit and vegetables, dairy, lean protein and whole grains, and contribute to an all-around healthier, balanced diet as recommended by the government's 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans.1
The analysis was conducted for the Can Manufacturers Institute and examined NPD Group's National Eating Trends™ survey and Nutrient Intake Database. It found that adults and children who frequently eat canned foods (six or more times in two weeks) have better diet quality compared to those who eat canned foods less frequently – one-to-two times over the same period.
This is good news – considering that a review of compliance with previous 2005 Guidelines by United States Department of Agriculture researchers and published in the Journal of Nutrition concluded that "nearly the entire U.S. population consumes a diet that is not on par with recommendations."2
"I regularly tell my clients that canned foods can help them to eat a more balanced diet. They offer a host of benefits – such as convenience, quality and, of course, nutrition," said Registered Dietitian Rebecca Scritchfield. "Plus, canned ingredients save people time and help them to prepare healthy, homemade meals for their families."
Nutrition Experts Agree on Benefits of Canned Food:
A recent survey of more than 300 registered dietitians (RDs), who counsel people on balanced eating and weight management, underscores the NPD analysis. In the survey, these nutrition experts indicated that they recognize the nutrition and value of canned foods not only for their clients, but for themselves:
100 percent of the RDs recommend canned foods to people who need to consume more fruits, vegetables, beans or fish in their diets.
99 percent of the RDs report that they have used some form of canned food in the past month to prepare nutritious meals for themselves and their families.
88 percent believe that the convenience of canned foods helps busy families get healthy balanced meals on the table.
This new research further affirms a study that highlighted the nutrition, cost and safety benefits of canned food conducted by Michigan State University, published in February in the American Journal of Lifestyle Medicine.3