Cupcakes or Cash? New Survey Reveals People Choose Favorite Foods over Money

Tuesday, March 23, 2010 General News
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DALLAS, March 22 People apparently can't be pulled away from their beloved pizza, tacos and mac n' cheese, according to a new survey released by the American Heart Association. The survey found that 40 percent of American adults would not accept payment to forgo their favorite foods - with another half of respondents taking no less than $100,000. The purpose of the survey was to assess how people feel about their comfort foods and treats, and the questions about money were hypothetical.


"Because we know people are motivated to eat healthier, the American Heart Association is committed to providing realistic and meaningful tools that are needed to make better choices," said Linda Van Horn, Ph.D., R.D., chair of the American Heart Association's Nutrition Committee, and professor of preventive medicine at Northwestern University, Feinberg School of Medicine in Chicago. "And, we know that many people are on their way to better health. Our recent survey revealed three-quarters of adults are already altering their favorite foods to make them healthier - whether substituting one ingredient for another, adding more healthy ingredients, or removing certain ingredients altogether."

The American Heart Association can help people enjoy a healthier lifestyle without giving up desired foods. Its Online Nutrition Center ( provides helpful tips for healthy shopping, dining out and cooking, along with delicious recipes and resources for kids.

Tasty Surprises Twitter Giveaway

From adding shredded carrots to meatloaf to using zucchini strips instead of lasagna noodles, everyone has their own go-to tip. The American Heart Association wants to reward those home chefs with creative substitutions and additions in its Tasty Surprises Twitter Giveaway where followers will have a chance to win prizes like a top-of-the-line mixer ($300 value) and other kitchen supplies.

The four-week Twitter giveaway, hosted by @AHA_Nutweetion (, calls on followers to share tips and photos of the substitutions they make to improve the nutritional quality of their favorite dishes. The Twitter follower with the most votes on their picture and tip will win. Each week will focus on a different tenet of the American Heart Association's nutrition guidelines, including:

Visit the American Heart Association's Facebook and Twitter pages to get more tips and engage with other people dedicated to healthy eating.

The American Heart Association's 2020 Goals and Nutrition

The American Heart Association continues its commitment to America and has set goals for 2020 to improve the cardiovascular health of all Americans by 20 percent while reducing deaths from cardiovascular diseases and stroke by 20 percent.

The goal focuses on the prevention of heart disease, and includes dietary goals for all Americans: to eat at least 4.5 cups of fruit and vegetables and three or more one ounce servings of fiber-rich whole grains daily; to eat two 3.5 ounce servings of fish a week; to limit sodium to less than 1,500 mg daily; and to drink less than or equal to 450 calories (or 36 ounces) from sugar-sweetened beverages a week. A heart-healthy diet is key to reducing heart disease risk factors, such as obesity, high cholesterol and hypertension.

Visit to learn more about the free tools and resources available from the American Heart Association. To view the multimedia assets associated with this release visit

About the American Heart Association

Founded in 1924, we're the nation's oldest and largest voluntary health organization dedicated to building healthier lives, free of heart disease and stroke. To help prevent, treat and defeat these diseases -- America's No. 1 and No. 3 killers -- we fund cutting-edge research, conduct lifesaving public and professional educational programs, and advocate to protect public health. To learn more or join us in helping all Americans, call 1-800-AHA-USA1 or visit

About the Survey

The survey, Tasty Surprises Nutrition Omnibus, was conducted in March 2010 with 1,000 adults (18 and older) selected from the online segment of Synovate's Consumer Opinion Panel.

Consumer Inquiries:

The American Heart Association

1-800-AHA-USA1; or visit

-- Lowering saturated and trans fats -- Reducing sodium -- Eating more fruits and vegetables -- Increasing consumption of fiber-rich whole grains

SOURCE American Heart Association

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