People Largely Ignore Fruit and Vegetable Dietary Recommendations

People Largely Ignore Fruit and Vegetable Dietary Recommendations

A report card issued by a consortium of government, non-profit health organizations and industry groups says fruit intake among adults in the U.S. has hardly risen since 2015, while vegetable consumption actually dropped.

The National Fruit & Vegetable Alliance (NFVA) report also found teens were even less inclined than adults to include fruits and veggies in their diets. Fruit and vegetable consumption among adolescents actually dropped slightly from 2015.

On a positive note, the National Action Plan Report Card found younger children increased their vegetable consumption by 3%, and fruit intake jumped 11% since 2015. The Alliance was quick to add that approximately 90% of children are still not eating the suggested amount of fruits and vegetables.

The Many Benefits of Fruits and Vegetables

Fruits and vegetables are packed with important vitamins, minerals and fiber that may lower your risk of developing cardiovascular disease and certain cancers, reports the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Fruits and veggies also contain a small number of calories and provide a feeling of fullness with little or no fat.

The American Heart Association (AHA) recommends eating at least eight servings of fruits and vegetables every day. A typical adult who consumes 2,000 calories daily should try to eat four to five cups of vegetables and fruits daily.

Simple Ways to Add Fruits and Veggies to Your Diet

It’s easy to add extra fruits and veggies into your daily diet. The AHA suggests combining frozen peas with macaroni and cheese, sprinkling blueberries or strawberries over breakfast cereal and adding spinach, broccoli and other veggies to pizza. You can instantly increase the nutritional value of an egg omelet or scrambled eggs by adding mushrooms, bell peppers or tomatoes.

A healthful fruit treat can be as simple as pouring 100% fruit juice in an ice tray and letting it freeze it overnight, suggests the CDC. You and your children can add the fruit cubes to water and other juices or eat them as mini-popsicles. Healthy dessert choices include canned fruit in light syrup, fresh fruits or gelatin that contains fruit.

Categories: Diet, Health, Nutrition