Memo to Michelle Obama: Americans Still Aren’t Eating Their Greens

Memo to Michelle Obama: Americans Still Aren’t Eating Their Greens

Jack Puccio/iStockphoto
By Millie Dent

Maybe First Lady Michelle Obama should refocus her healthy eating campaign more on adults than children. Fewer than 20 percent of American adults are eating enough fruits and vegetables, newly released data from a Centers for Disease Control and Prevention survey.

The United States Department of Agriculture’s nutrition guidelines recommend that Americans have two to three cups of vegetables every day, along with 1.5 to two cups of fruit. Based on those criteria, only 13 percent of adults in the survey ate enough fruit and a meager 9 percent of individuals ate enough vegetables. These numbers are worse than in years past. Between 2007 and 2010, 76 percent of Americans didn’t consume the recommended amount of fruit and 87 percent failed to eat enough vegetables.  

Related Link: The 11 Worst Fast Food Restaurants in America

What’s more, while consumption of fruits and vegetables varies substantially from place to place, the residents of each and every state in the union fell short of the USDA recommendations. In Tennessee, 7.5 percent of residents consume enough fruit, while in Mississippi, a mere 5.5 percent of individuals eat enough vegetables. California ranked highest for eating both fruits and vegetables, but even there, just about 18 percent eat enough fruit and 13 percent eat enough veggies.

“Substantial new efforts are needed to build consumer demand for fruits and vegetables through competitive pricing, placement, and promotion in child care, schools, grocery stores, communities, and worksites,” the CDC report says.

The report comes out after a study published in last month’s JAMA Internal Medicine found that fewer than one-third of Americans are currently at a healthy weight. The majority of individuals are either overweight or obese. 

Chart of the Day: Long Way to Go on Coronavirus Testing

Healthcare workers with ChristianaCare test people with symptoms of the coronavirus in a drive-thru in the parking lot of Chase
Jennifer Corbett
By The Fiscal Times Staff

The White House on Friday unveiled plans for a new effort to ramp up testing for Covid-19, which experts say is an essential part of limiting the spread of the virus. This chart from Vox gives a sense of just how far the U.S. has to go to catch up to other countries that are dealing with the pandemic, including South Korea, the leading virus screener with 3,692 tests per million people. The U.S., by comparison, has done about 23 tests per million people as of March 12.

After Spending $2 Billion, Air Force Bails Out on Planned Upgrades of B-2 Bombers

The B-2 Spirit stealth bomber flies over the Missouri Sky after taking off from the Whiteman Air For..
© Hyungwon Kang / Reuters
By The Fiscal Times Staff

The Air Force has scrapped a planned upgrade of its B-2 stealth bomber fleet — even after spending $2 billion on the effort — because defense contractor Northrup Grumman didn’t have the necessary software expertise to complete the project on time and on budget, Bloomberg’s Anthony Capaccio reports, citing the Pentagon’s chief weapons buyer.

Ellen Lord, the undersecretary of defense for acquisition and sustainment, told reporters that the nearly $2 billion that had already been spent on the program wasn’t wasted because “we are still going to get upgraded electronic displays.”

Big Hurdle for Sanders’ Plan to Cancel Student Debt

Chip East / REUTERS
By The Fiscal Times Staff

Bernie Sanders wants to eliminate $1.6 trillion in student debt, to be paid for by a tax on financial transactions, but doing so won’t be easy, says Josh Mitchell of The Wall Street Journal.  

The main problem for Sanders is that most Americans don’t support the plan, with 57% of respondents in a poll last fall saying they oppose the idea of canceling all student debt. And the politics are particularly thorny for Sanders as he prepares for a likely general election run, Mitchell says: “Among the strongest opponents are groups Democrats hope to peel away from President Trump: Rust Belt voters, independents, whites, men and voters in rural areas.”

Number of the Day: $7 Million

NY mayor cites climate stance in endorsing Obama
By The Fiscal Times Staff

That’s how much Michael Bloomberg is spending per day in his pursuit of the Democratic presidential nomination, according to new monthly filings with the Federal Election Commission. “In January alone, Bloomberg dropped more than $220 million on his free-spending presidential campaign,” The Hill says. “That breaks down to about $7.1 million a day, $300,000 an hour or $5,000 per minute.”