Australian’s don’t make friends with salad, a Roy Morgan study shows.

Everybody knows the rule: two-and-five — two fruit and five vegetables per day. It seems so simple, but does anyone actually follow the guidelines?

Findings from a recent Roy Morgan study show that the vast majority of Australians are not even close to making their daily requirements of fruit and veg intake.

14,000 Australians were polled in the study and the results are quite shocking, with 46 per cent of Australians admitting to eating one piece or less of fruit per day.

The findings show that a minute two per cent of Australians actually eat the daily intake which is recommended  by the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC).

And for the rest of the population, there are vast differences in the amount consumed, all depending on factors such as age, gender and socio-economic status.

The graph below represents the different amounts of fruit and vegetables Australians eat per day.


Source: Roy Morgan Single Source (Australia), November 2013 – October 2014 (n=14,088).

Getting five whole servings of vegetables does seem like a bit of an effort to most and if you’re finding it a struggle, you’re not alone. The study showed that vegetables are where most Aussies fall short.

The differences are vast and the facts a little scary. The study showed 60 per cent of the population eat two or less serves each day, in contrast with the six per cent who actually eat the recommended five or more serves.

Women also eat more veggies than men, and Australians aged 50 and over are more likely than the younger generations to eat three or more serves a day. However, even they struggle to meet the recommended five serves, with only eight per cent of that demographic making the cut.

The study did show that Australians do a much better job at eating their recommended intake of fruit, however.

33 per cent of women and 28 per cent of men eat the recommended two serves a day. And whilst older Australians are generally good at eating their fruit, the study showed that they are still beaten by 14-17 year olds. 62 per cent of the teenagers in this age bracket are likely to eat two or more serves per day.

In a statement on behalf of Roy Morgan Research, group account director Angela Smith said that “the amount of vegetables most of us eat, in particular, is well below the recommendation.”

Ms Smith did agree that sticking to the two and five rule was difficult. “Coming up with and preparing creative, tasty vege-centric meals takes time – all that chopping! It’s a far cry from Australia’s long-standing meat-and-two-veg culinary tradition.”

Nevertheless, the study does reveal a very strong message for Australians.

“Given that less than two per cent of Australians do eat five serves of vegetables and two serves of fruit every day, pretty much all of us have ample room for dietary improvements.”

Do you eat your two fruits and five vegetables each day? If not, why not? Have your say in the comments below!