Article written

  • on 10.06.2011
  • at 12:46 PM
  • by Jessy Troy

Four Ways That Canadians Eat Better Than Americans


While most Canadians and Americans would agree that their two countries are fairly similar, one area where the two countries differ is eating habits. According to a recent study by The NPD Group, Canadians eat better than Americans in the following ways:


Canadians and Americans differ in their snack preferences. Canadians were found to prefer salty snacks like crackers and chips, while Americans had more of a sweet tooth preferring foods like ice cream, cake, chocolates, and candy. Generally speaking, sweet foods contain more fat and have a higher calorie count than salty snacks.

While neither salty snacks or sweet snacks are necessarily “good” for you, the higher calorie count of sweets means that they are typically worse in terms of nutrition.

Morning Meals

Breakfast has always been heralded as the most important meal of the day, and researchers have found differences between Canadians and Americans in this area too. According to the study, Americans showed a preference towards easy to prepare and/or packaged breakfast items.

Canadians, however, showed a decreasing trend in consuming these same types of foods. Most nutritionists warn that pre-packaged food items are generally less healthy than prepared foods, and often times a simple bowl of cereal is better still. America’s increasing preference for these types of fast, ready-to-eat breakfast foods is a bad sign.

Carb-loaded Side Dishes

The study also showed that Americans favored starchy side dishes such as mashed potatoes, french fries, and macaroni and cheese more than Canadians. What’s more, it’s projected that Americans will consume these types of foods at an increasing rate compared to Canadians over the next ten years. Foods high in carbohydrates – especially when served as side dishes – increase the likelihood of consuming too many calories during the day.

Main Dish Proteins

Americans will consume main dish proteins – a.k.a. meat – at a higher rate than Canadians in the next ten years. Meat contains essential proteins and nutrients of course, but most nutritionists agree that Canadians and Americans both eat too much meat. The fact that Americans will be consuming more meat over the next decade doesn’t bode well.

While I’m not a nutritionist, the findings of The NPD Group show that Canada’s citizens do a better job of eating right than Americans. Perhaps this is because the average American feels stressed and/or short on time during their daily lives. This would definitely explain why Americans emphasize pre-packaged breakfast foods over self-prepared meals.

Whatever the reason, the study’s findings show that Americans and Canadians can both improve their eating habits.

Jason Lancaster is a nutritional hobbyist. His work with a Toronto, Canada real estate broker named Denny Finelli inspired this article.

cc licensed ( BY SD ) flickr photo shared by archer10 (Dennis)

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  • lesliedelazo

    Oh It's all so true!  Americans and Canadians are too differ in  eating habits. Americans emphasize pre-packaged breakfast foods over self-prepared meals. They don't consider a healthy diet.
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