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Abstract

The consumption of fast‐food in the United States has seen strong growth in recent decades and fast‐food itself is becoming somewhat of a staple in many Americans’ diets. The proportion of overweight Americans has also risen substantially over the same time period, reaching alarming levels. Over the years, legislators and health care activists have attempted to inform the public about the dangers of eating large amounts of fast‐food and the effects of becoming overweight. This study analyzes how groups of people and different consumer behaviors effect the consumption of fast‐food. One group of variables focuses on demographic factors such as race and education, while another group focuses on consumer behavior such as grocery shopping and time spent cooking. The data for the research was acquired from the 2009‐2010 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, particularly the Flexible Consumer Behavior Survey module. The study finds that gender, age, and time spent cooking had a significant negative effect on the consumption of fast‐food, while race had a positive influence. With this research, groups who have been indicated to consume more fast‐food may be better targeted about the dangers of consuming large amounts of it.  

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