The average American Heart Association healthy-diet score for U.S. adults improved between 2003–2004 and 2015–2016, according to the AHA Statistical Update 2020. Two scales were used to measure diet quality. On one of them, scores for a poor diet decreased from 56% to 47.8%; on the second, poor diet prevalence dropped from 43.7% to 36.4%.

The improvement was attributed to people reducing their intake of sugar-sweetened beverages and eating more whole grains, nuts, seeds and legumes. Unfortunately, results showed no significant change in adult consumption of fruits, vegetables, fish, shellfish, sodium, processed meat or saturated fat between the two time frames.