Lifestyle

Only 5% of Aussie children eat enough fruit and vegetables

Dark green vegetables like broccoli can help fight cancer and boost the effectiveness of anti-cancer drugs according to new research. Photo: Contributed
Dark green vegetables like broccoli can help fight cancer and boost the effectiveness of anti-cancer drugs according to new research. Photo: Contributed Photo: Contributed

ALARMING new figures from the Australian Bureau of Statistics show 94.6 % of children are not getting the recommended daily intake of fruit and vegetables.

The results from the 2014-15 National Health Survey, conducted by the ABS and designed to collect a wide range of information about the health of Australians, revealed only 5.4 per cent of children aged 2-18 years met the guidelines for the recommended daily serves of vegetables.

The Australian Dietary Guidelines recommend that children eat five serves of vegetables a day to ensure they receive the necessary nutrients to grow and develop into healthy adults.

AUSVEG spokesperson Dimi Kyriakou said the statistics were particularly concerning given one in four children are considered overweight or obese.

"This is a great opportunity for parents to encourage their kids to get involved in the preparation and cooking of healthy dinners, as cementing these healthy eating habits from a young age will ensure that they continue throughout their child's lifetime," she said.

"Vegetables can be a star addition to any breakfast, lunch and dinner, and it is important for children to think of vegetables as an essential part of their daily diet."

Guidelines indicate that one serving of vegetables is equivalent to half a cup of cooked vegetables, half a medium potato, or one cup of salad vegetables.

"Australians are fortunate to have access to a wide range of clean, green and safe veggies that can turn any meal into a delicious and healthy option for the whole family," said Ms Kyriakou.

"The benefits of vegetables have been widely documented and reinforce the important role that vegetables play in maintaining a healthy diet."



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