Tweens ignore calorie info

When it comes to calorie counts at fast food restaurants, most tweens and teens just don’t care.

A new study published in the Journal of Public Health surveyed youth ages 9-18 about fast food restaurants and calorie information on the menus.

The study found 42 percent of youth reported using calorie information when it was available. About 58 percent said they never use it.

The study also asked the teens about their fast food habits. Of those who reported eating at fast food/chain restaurants, about 66 percent reported going one or fewer times a week. About 34 percent reported going two or more times per week, according to the study.

Those who ate at the restaurants two or more times per week were 50 percent less likely to use the calorie information, according to the study.

Among those who ate at fast food restaurants, girls were 80 percent more likely to use calorie information than boys and obese kids were about 70 percent more likely to use the information than kids of healthy weight, according to the study.

Interesting study to consider today, which happens to be National Hamburger Day. (On that note: Americans, on average, eat three hamburgers a week, for a national total of 50 billion burgers a year.)

Marissa Harshman

Marissa Harshman

I'm the health reporter for The Columbian newspaper in Vancouver, Wash. I started at The Columbian -- my hometown newspaper -- in September 2009. Reach me at or 360-735-4546.

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