Why It Matters

Good nutrition is essential in keeping current and future generations of Americans healthy across the lifespan. Breastfeeding helps protect against childhood illnesses, including ear and respiratory infections, asthma, and sudden infant death syndrome (SIDS). People with healthy eating patterns live longer and are at lower risk for serious health problems such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and obesity. For people with chronic diseases, healthy eating can help manage these conditions and prevent complications.

Fewer than 1 in 10 children and adults eat recommended daily amount of vegetables

Fewer than 1 in 10 children and adults eat recommended daily amount of vegetables.

Only 4 in 10 children and fewer than 1 in 7 adults eat enough fruit

Only 4 in 10 children and fewer than 1 in 7 adults eat enough fruit.

Poor Nutrition Is Making Our Nation Sick

Vitamin and mineral malnutrition impacts our health and economy.

vitamins and minerals Low levels of vitamins and minerals can result in mental impairment and central nervous system defects in infants.

vitamins and minerals Poor nutrition contributes to many costly diseases, including obesity, heart disease, and some cancers.

Mothers stop breastfeeding earlier than intended.

vitamins and minerals More than 80% of mothers start out breastfeeding, but about 60% stop sooner than they planned.

vitamins and minerals Low rates of breastfeeding add more than $3 billion a year to medical costs for women and children in the United States.

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