Waikato and BOP residents eat the widest variety of vegetables with their dinner, according to a recent 5+ A Day survey.
Figures from the survey show 65 per cent of all Kiwis have two to three different types of vegetables at dinner, with residents of the upper North Island (excluding Auckland) topping the variety stakes.
Thirty-six per cent of those in the Waikato, Bay of Plenty and Northland include four or more different types of vegetables on their dinner plate, while 15 per cent enjoy five or more different types.
South Islanders are kitchen masters when it comes to slicing and dicing fresh produce, with 57 per cent saying they are very confident when it comes to preparing fruit and vegetables, while only seven per cent lack confidence.
On the flip side, Aucklanders are a little less confident than the rest of the population with only 45 per cent report being very confident in preparing fruit and vegetables and 12 per cent quite unsure or very unsure.
Confidence in the kitchen is high among the population as a whole with 51 per cent very confident and 41 per cent reasonably confident when preparing fresh fruit and vegetables.
Women are more likely to reach for an apple or carrot, with 41 per cent eating five or more servings of fresh produce a day, while only 27 per cent of men do the same. When a snack attack hits, 78 per cent of Kiwis pick fruit and vegetables to nibble on.
The survey, commissioned by 5+ A Day to find out about Kiwis’ fruit and vegetable eating habits, also found just over a third (36 per cent) of New Zealanders eat the recommended five or more pieces of fruit and vegetables a day, with dinner being the meal where we eat the most fresh produce.
5+ A Day nutritionist, Bronwen Anderson, says small changes can make a big difference.
“It is great to see people enjoying a variety of vegetables at dinnertime and to snack on,” she says. “But the survey also found 45 per cent of people had no fresh fruit or vegetables at breakfast. We see this as the perfect opportunity for people to increase their daily intake of fresh produce and be well on their way to getting 5+ A Day.
“A good, healthy breakfast boosts alertness, concentration and helps to maintain a healthy body weight. Fruit and vegetables are packed with micronutrients that play an important role in setting you up for the rest of the day.”
To encourage people to eat more fruit and vegetables, the 5+ A Day Challenge, starting on February 1, encourages New Zealanders to add an extra serving of fruit or vegetable to their day to boost health and wellbeing.
“This is such a simple Challenge but one which can have an impact on health,” says Bronwen. “Just adding one serving, which is about a handful, is not a big ask.”
The month-long Challenge will run through the 5+ A Day Facebook page (www.facebook.com/5adayNZ) where people will be able to find recipes and tips on how to add an extra serving to their day.
Visit www.5aday.co.nz for inspiration and details on how to enter the 5+ A Day Challenge.
The results are from a survey of 706 people nationwide, conducted by Nielsen in December. It forms part of 5+ A Day’s ongoing consumer research into the fresh produce industry and the eating habits of New Zealanders when it comes to fruit and vegetables.
How we rate
- On average, 36% eat the recommended five servings of fresh fruit and vegetables a day.
- 78% snack on fruit and vegetables.
- 65% include 2-3 different types of vegetables at dinner time.
- 51% are very confident preparing and cooking fresh fruit and vegetables.
- 41% of women eat the recommended five servings of fresh fruit and vegetables a day, while only 27% of men do.
- 45% of Kiwis over 15 years old have no fruit or vegetables for breakfast.
Add an extra serving of fresh fruit and vegetables each day to reach your 5+ A Day. Here are some ideas on how to do it.
|Add an extra serving at breakfast:
|Add an extra serving at lunch:
|Add an extra serving with dessert:
|Add an extra serving at snack time: