The study suggested that fast food consumption tends to dwindle with age, as that number fell to under 38 percent for those in their 40s and 50s.
Pick a day at random, and you can bet that almost 40% of Americans will eat fast food during those 24 hours, according to a new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS). That includes 37.9 percent of men and 35.4 percent of women, according to a report published Wednesday by the CDC's National Center for Health Statistics.
A new study has revealed something that shouldn't come as a shock to too many people - Americans love their fast food. And as family income rises, so, too, does a person's likelihood of eating fast food.
"In addition, a higher percentage of non-Hispanic white adults consumed fast food than did non-Hispanic Asian adults".
After the age of 40, Americans' fast food consumption steadily declines, the study showed.
When asked to recall what they had eaten in the past 24 hours, about 45 percent of consumers in their 20s and 30s reported having eaten fast food over the past day. Only 24.1 percent of adults aged 60 and older consumed fast food, while 37.7 percent of adults ages 40 to 59 and 44.9 percent of adults aged 20 to 39 did.
Every single day more than one third of Americans eat something that is widely known to cause all sorts of health issues - fast food.
"Most fast food is not good for our bodies", said Liz Weinandy, a registered dietitian at Ohio State University's Wexner Medical Center. The most common meal for fast food intake was lunch (43.7 percent), followed by dinner (42.0 percent), then breakfast (22.8 percent) and snacks (22.6 percent).
The CDC noted in its statement that fast food has been associated with a variety of problems, including elevated caloric intake and poor diet quality.
A perhaps surprising finding is that the more money you make the more likely you are to eat at fast food restaurants.
"We do know that fast food advertising has gone up during that time by pretty large amounts".
"The other thing that we suspect is also that the restaurants have been introducing healthier items with their kids' meals", she said, adding that even though there are some healthier options on menus, several items are still high in calories, fat and salt.
"When we see news clips of a shark swimming near a beach, it scares us into not going near that beach", Weinandy said.
"We know for children, on days that they consume fast food, they eat about 120 more calories that day". "It takes time and some organization".