The Road Ahead : October 2012
ROADAHEAD.COM.AU THE ROAD AHEAD OCT/NOV 2012 18 A newly-published report on the country's health and nutrition might surprise you. LIFESTYLE HEALTH + WELLBEING you are what you eat AMID THE REPORTS about sky-rocketing obesity rates, there's finally some positive feedback about the eating habits of Australians. A report by the Australian Institute of Health and Welfare (AIHW), has revealed that adults and children are consuming an adequate intake of most nutrients, based on dietary recommendations. Unfortunately, the good news ends there. The Australia's food and nutrition 2012 report, which highlights how food choices affect health and the environment, showed that many Australians are not following a balanced diet, leaning more towards foods high in fat and sugar. These foods contributed to 36 percent of energy intake for adults and 41 percent for children -- far higher than recommended. And when it comes to not eating their greens, children aren't the only culprits. The report found that about nine in 10 adults aren't eating enough vegetables, and only 50 percent are eating enough fruit. Whether people choose to eat healthily or unhealthily is often based on economics rather than nutrition, according to AIHW spokesperson Lisa McGlynn. "There are some factors that discourage Australians from eating well and maintaining a healthy body weight," Ms McGlynn said. "The cost of healthy food is increasing at a faster rate than the cost of less healthy food. This may influence some people to buy less healthy foods due to limited choice and high cost." The AIHW Australia's food and nutrition 2012 report also found: • Twenty-fve percent of men and 10 percent of women aged 65 and older don't eat enough protein foods. • Six in 10 adults are overweight or obese, with the latest national data showing 36 percent are overweight and 25 percent are obese. • Poor dietary intake increases the risk of developing chronic diseases, such as heart disease, diabetes and some cancers. The AIHW is a national agency set up by the Australian Government to provide information and statistics on Australia's health and welfare. To obtain a full copy of the Australia's food and nutrition 2012 report, go to aihw.gov.au. STORY DEB ECCLESTON The cost of healthy food is increasing at a faster rate than the cost of less healthy food.
August 1st 2012