How Bad Are Fried Foods, Really?

Fried food gets a bad rap. Numerous research studies have shown that eating fried foods increases an individual’s risk of cardiovascular disease and type 2 diabetes. Recently, scientists from the University of Iowa in Iowa City investigated the connection between eating fried foods and an individual’s overall likelihood of death. A paper describing their research was recently published in The BMJ.

The researchers analyzed data from approximately 107,000 women between the ages of 50 and 80 years old who had joined the Women’s Health Initiative study between 1993 and 1998. Follow-up information on these participants was available through February 2017.

Part of the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) study required participants to complete detailed questionnaires concerning their daily activities and dietary habits. Among other dietary details, the participants were required to report consumption of a variety of specific foods, including various fried foods. They were also asked to specify their total consumption of these foods.

The researchers began by dividing fried foods into three categories:
1. Fried chicken
2. Fried fish or shellfish
3. Other fried foods

After accounting for a wide variety of other factors, the research team was able to find clear statistical evidence that eating fried foods on a regular basis led to an increased risk factor of death — from all causes. The correlation between eating fried foods and death from heart disease was especially high.

In detailing the effects of the categories listed above, the researchers determined that one serving of fried chicken per day correlated to a 13% increase in an individual’s risk of death from all causes, while eating one serving of fried fish or shellfish per day led to a 7% increase in death from all causes.

The results of the study led the scientists to conclude that:

“Reducing the consumption of fried foods, especially fried chicken and fried fish/shellfish, may have a clinically meaningful impact across the public health spectrum.”

The scientists noted that although their analysis accounted for a variety of factors, including lifestyle, income, and educational level, the specific results of their report only applied to women. Nevertheless, the negative impact of fried foods is hypothesized to have at least as severe an effect on men.

The reputation of fried foods as unhealthy? It’s well deserved.

At Atlantic Coast Healthcare and Rehabilitation Center, in Lakewood, NJ, we know that one of the many ways to our residents’ hearts is through their stomachs. Our staff includes a master chef and a group of culinary experts who work with registered dietitians to prepare healthful, delicious meals. We even take care to serve our residents on fine china to ensure that our meals are as pleasing to the eye as they are tempting to the palate.

Read our reviews on,, and to hear what our residents and their families have to say.

Or better yet, come see for yourself: Contact us to schedule a tour by calling 732-364-7100, or by clicking here.

Contact us at 732-364-7100, or by clicking here.

Leave a Comment