Article

Potential Health Benefits and Medical Cost Savings From Calorie, Sodium, and Saturated Fat Reductions in the American Diet

The Lewin Group, 3130 Fairview Park Dr, Suite 800, Falls Church, VA 22042, USA.
American journal of health promotion: AJHP (Impact Factor: 2.37). 07/2009; 23(6):412-22. DOI: 10.4278/ajhp.080930-QUAN-226
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT

Model the potential national health benefits and medical savings from reduced daily intake of calories, sodium, and saturated fat among the U.S. adult population.
Simulation based on secondary data analysis; quantitative research. Measures include the prevalence of overweight/obesity, uncontrolled hypertension, elevated cholesterol, and related chronic conditions under various hypothetical dietary changes.
United States.
Two hundred twenty-four million adults.
Findings come from a Nutrition Impact Model that combines information from national surveys, peer-reviewed studies, and government reports.
The simulation model predicts disease prevalence and medical expenditures under hypothetical dietary change scenarios.
We estimate that permanent 100-kcal reductions in daily intake would eliminate approximately 71.2 million cases of overweight/obesity and save $58 billion annually. Long-term sodium intake reductions of 400 mg/d in those with uncontrolled hypertension would eliminate about 1.5 million cases, saving $2.3 billion annually. Decreasing 5 g/d of saturated fat intake in those with elevated cholesterol would eliminate 3.9 million cases, saving $2.0 billion annually.
Modest to aggressive changes in diet can improve health and reduce annual national medical expenditures by $60 billion to $120 billion. One use of the model is to estimate the impact of dietary change related to setting public health priorities for dietary guidance. The findings here argue that emphasis on reduction in caloric intake should be the highest priority.

Download full-text

Full-text

Available from: Kristin J Reimers
  • Source
    • "Accordingly, it has been recognized that diet changes have the potential to reduce medical expenditures by considerable amounts. For example, it has been calculated in the United States that a permanent reduction of 100 kilocalories in daily intake would result in savings of related medical costs of 58 billion dollars annually, as it would eliminate some 70 million cases of obesity or overweight (Dall et al., 2009). "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: There is a growing recognition that nutrition may have a positive impact on public health and that it may reduce medical expenditures. Yet, such claims need to be substantiated by evidence. This evidence could be delivered by health technology assessment (HTA), which can be thought of as the evaluation of technologies for clinical effectiveness, cost-effectiveness, and ethical, legal, and social impacts. The application of HTA to the field of ‘nutrition interventions’ is recent. So far, HTA and nutrition have represented two worlds far apart in many respects. This contribution, roughly, addresses the following issues: is there a need for HTAs in the field of nutrition, what would such HTAs look like, and how can the results coming from these HTAs optimally aid policy making?
    Full-text · Article · Nov 2015 · Frontiers in Pharmacology
  • Source
    • "Dietary behaviors consistent with guidelines for healthy eating have the potential to produce substantial health and economic benefits. Previous research has demonstrated that, for example, increased consumption of dairy, as well as reduced intakes of calories, sodium, and saturated fat would facilitate considerable health and economic benefits ranging from US$2 to $58 billion annually (McCarron and Heaney, 2004; Dall et al., 2009; Bibbins- Domingo et al., 2010). From a functional food perspective, Gyles et al. (2010) showed that direct and indirect coronary heart disease (CHD)-related costs could be reduced by CAD$38 million to $2.5 billion if Canadians increased intakes of phystosterols. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: Type 2 diabetes (T2D) and cardiovascular disease (CVD) are leading causes of mortality and two of the most costly diet-related ailments worldwide. Consumption of fiber-rich diets has been repeatedly associated with favorable impacts on these co-epidemics, however, the healthcare cost-related economic value of altered dietary fiber intakes remains poorly understood. In this study, we estimated the annual cost savings accruing to the Canadian healthcare system in association with reductions in T2D and CVD rates, separately, following increased intakes of dietary fiber by adults. A three-step cost-of-illness analysis was conducted to identify the percentage of individuals expected to consume fiber-rich diets in Canada, estimate increased fiber intakes in relation to T2D and CVD reduction rates, and independently assess the potential annual savings in healthcare costs associated with the reductions in rates of these two epidemics. The economic model employed a sensitivity analysis of four scenarios (universal, optimistic, pessimistic, and very pessimistic) to cover a range of assumptions within each step. Non-trivial healthcare and related savings of CAD$35.9-$718.8 million in T2D costs and CAD$64.8 million-$1.3 billion in CVD costs were calculated under a scenario where cereal fiber was used to increase current intakes of dietary fiber to the recommended levels of 38 g per day for men and 25 g per day for women. Each 1 g per day increase in fiber consumption resulted in annual CAD$2.6 to $51.1 million savings for T2D and $4.6 to $92.1 million savings for CVD. Findings of this analysis shed light on the economic value of optimal dietary fiber intakes. Strategies to increase consumers' general knowledge of the recommended intakes of dietary fiber, as part of healthy diet, and to facilitate stakeholder synergy are warranted to enable better management of healthcare and related costs associated with T2D and CVD in Canada.
    Full-text · Article · Aug 2015 · Frontiers in Pharmacology
  • Source
    • "Obesity and obesity-related disorders, are epidemic in Western countries, where cheap energy-dense food can be “found”, but not in really poor countries. Soft drinks are often a main course in such cheap energy menus [63–66]. On the other side, replacing sugar-sweetened beverages intake with water is associated with reductions in total calories and weight loss [67, 68]. "
    [Show abstract] [Hide abstract]
    ABSTRACT: This review focuses on the potential role of soft drinks, particularly the sugar component, in the pathogenesis of erectile dysfunction (ED). We analyzed the hypothetical link between metabolic disorders, induced by sweetened soft drinks overconsumption, and ED. High caloric intake, high refined-carbohydrates, and high fructose corn syrup (HFCS) content and less satiety are main factors responsible for metabolic disorders contributing to ED development. Regular diet mistakes among human males, such as soft drink consumption, may lead to slow and asymptomatic progression of ED, finally resulting in full claimed manifestation of ED.
    Full-text · Article · Sep 2011 · Central European Journal of Urology
Show more