Junk food and alcohol dominate Aussie diets, with only one in five getting enough veg, CSIRO finds

Healthy diet

The CSRIO has disclosed a report stating that just 20% of Australians are consuming an adequate amount of vegetables in their diet.

Healthy diet - Figure 1
Photo www.abc.net.au

Over the span of eight years, a study called the CSIRO Healthy Diet Score report analyzed the dietary habits of over 235,000 adults in Australia.

According to research, only a fifth of the population is consuming an adequate amount of vegetables, while diets are largely composed of alcohol, fast food, and sweets.

According to the report, the individuals who worked in the construction industry had the least nutritious diets. Conversely, individuals who were retired and those in the fitness industry had the healthiest eating habits.

The study examined nine different aspects, such as how much, how good, and how diverse the foods were, and predicted how well they followed the Australian Dietary Guidelines, giving a grade out of 100.

The healthier your diet is, the closer it gets to 100.

According to Gilly Hendrie, one of the authors of the report, the participants who were surveyed did not do very well with an average diet score of 55 out of 100. They barely passed.

This score highlights the fact that we have a lot of work to do in terms of improving our dietary choices and decreasing the overall size of our country's population.

What's Cooking?

According to the report, when it comes to diet quality, discretionary foods received the lowest score of 20 out of 100 across all genders and age groups, with an average of 28 servings per week.

The most significant sources were discovered to be alcoholic beverages, desserts like cakes and biscuits, sugary treats such as chocolate and confectionery, and meals ordered for delivery or takeout.

According to recent research, just 40% of grown-ups say they consume three or more diverse vegetables during their primary meal. (Image from Unsplash: Maarten van den Heuvel)

Healthy diet - Figure 2
Photo www.abc.net.au

Typically, vegetables received a score of 58 out of 100 based on a recent survey. Moreover, only 40% of grown-ups claimed consuming three or more types of veggies during the primary meal as a sign of sustaining a nutritious diet.

The category that performed the best in the survey was beverages, earning a score of 93 out of 100. The high score was mostly due to people choosing water instead of sugary soft drinks or juices.

According to the report, construction workers and individuals in the beauty and fashion industry consumed the highest amount of unhealthy food, averaging 45 servings per week.

Men's diet quality was slightly lower than that of women, but their vegetable intake was significantly lower.

According to Dr. Hendrie, enhancing our combined rating is significant for enhancing our overall health, battling the issue of obesity in Australia, and decreasing the impact of lifestyle conditions like heart disease, Type 2 diabetes, and specific cancers.

Better Your Diet: Tips & Tricks

According to Lauren Ball, who works as a professor of Community Health and Wellbeing at the University of Queensland, the report's findings were not unexpected.

For quite some time now, we have been aware that Australia has a great advantage in terms of having access to nutritious food. However, this is not reflected in the current food choices of Australians as shown by the available evidence.

Alcoholic beverages and unhealthy fast food are the main types of food that are commonly consumed in Australia.

According to her, a simple and effective method to enhance one's diet is to purchase fresh fruits and vegetables while refraining from consuming processed meals.

Professor Ball suggests that we make vegetables and fruits the mainstay of our everyday meals.

When you have to decide between a meal or a choice that has more vegetables or fruits, or less, go for the one that has more.

Products that are found inside the designated areas of supermarkets and are not fresh produce will typically have a higher sodium content due to their processing and packaging.

According to Professor Ball, it's possible to maintain a healthy diet without breaking the bank. One way to do this is by purchasing fruits and vegetables when they are in season and there is an abundance of supply. This can result in lower prices and more affordable options.

She expressed that the most effortless method to accomplish that task is likely to attend a farmers market.

Another valuable tip to save money is to plan in advance. You can still enjoy delicious meals even on a tight budget if you strategize and have everything ready.

According to Professor Ball, the saying that 'your health is priceless' holds truer today than ever before.

She stated that nowadays, we are observing a growing trend where good health is the best reflection of one's overall wellbeing.

It's becoming more crucial to prioritize our health and wellbeing, and we should make an effort to take care of ourselves.

Published three hours ago on Monday, September 11, 2023 at 7:41 pm, and last edited three hours ago on the same day at 7:49 pm.

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