(HealthDay News) — Most Americans are not consuming the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables, according to a new report published in the July 10 issue of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report.
The findings are based on data gathered by the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, an ongoing CDC-sponsored survey that tracks the healthy and unhealthy actions that average Americans take. Just 13.1% of U.S. residents consume one and a half to two cups of fruit every day as recommended by federal dietary guidelines, the researchers found. And, only 8.9% of Americans eat two to three cups of vegetables every day as recommended.
State-by-state, the percentage of people who eat enough vegetables ranged from highs of 13% in California and 11% in Oregon to lows of 5.5% in Mississippi, 5.8% in Oklahoma, and 6.2% in Tennessee. People eating enough fruit ranged from highs of 17.7% in California and 15.5% in New York to lows of 7.5% in Tennessee, 7.7% in West Virginia, and 8.2% in Oklahoma.
The authors of the study called for widespread action to promote fruits and vegetables in the average diet. “Substantial new efforts are needed to build consumer demand for fruits and vegetables through competitive pricing, placement, and promotion in child care, schools, grocery stores, communities and worksites,” they write.