Based on an ongoing surveillance system, fruit and vegetable intake across America remains lower than the recommended portions. Fruit and vegetables not only adds valuable nutrients but also reduces the risk for heart disease, stroke, some cancers and helps manage body weight.
The data is collected through the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, an ongoing, state-based, random telephone survey of adults 18 years and older living in the U.S.
Adults who exercise less than 30 minutes a day should consume two cups of fruit and two to three cups of vegetables based on the Dietary Guidelines for Americans. Based on data from 2007-2010, 76 and 87 percent did not meet fruit and vegetable intake recommendations, respectively. An overwhelming 60 and 93 percent of children also did not meet fruit and vegetable recommendations, respectively.
To improve fruit and vegetable intake, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends:
- encouraging children to start start and maintain good eating habits
- schools should serve the recommended amounts of fruits and vegetables
- improve fruit and vegetable accessibility, placement and promotion in community settings
Click here for 12 simple ways to add more fruits and vegetables to your diet.