A short entry on the NY Times website provides the Facts and Figures of pizza consumption in the United States. I have a casual interest in how statistics are used (or abused) to provide information to general audiences, and a couple questions have arisen based on the statistics presented:
- If 1 out of 8 Americans will eat pizza today, does that mean that the average American will eat pizza once every 8 days? There's an assumption here that every american eats pizza, which is not the case; however, that raises the question of how to make a valid assumption of how many Americans eat pizza.
- It is reported that 25% of a child's caloric intake is pizza. I'll define a child as a 9 year old who is moderately active and therefore needs a 2000 calorie daily intake. If we trust Google's estimate that the number of calories in a pizza slice is 285, then does that suggest that a child consumes 12 slices of pizza per week on average? (2000 * 7 * 0.25 / 285)
I suspect my interpretation of the statistics is flawed; it does not seem to me that a child could be part of the 1-out-of-8 Americans eating pizza today while also eating approximately 1.7 slices per day to achieve the 25% caloric intake number.