More than 70% of Americans include too much meat and fat in the diets and too few vegetables, according to cancer researchers.

A recent survey showed 72% of Americans centre their meals on animal fats and do not eat enough vegetables that could prevent cancer, heart disease and other health problems, reported Reuters.

According to the American Institute for Cancer Research survey, only 27% of Americans eat the recommended proportion of plant food to animal food.

“This survey shows that Americans have got the proportions of food on their plates reversed. … Most are cutting themselves off from the protection afforded by the vitamins, minerals and cancer-fighting phytochemicals found in vegetables, fruits, whole grains and beans,” Melanie Polk of the AICR was quoted by Reuters as saying.

The survey results suggest that many Americans are ignoring the advice of health groups and the government’s Department of Agriculture, which advises people to follow a plant-based diet, supplemented with a small amount of meat and low-fat dairy products.