The association of income with fresh fruit and vegetable consumption at different levels of education

Eur J Clin Nutr. 2010 Mar;64(3):324-7. doi: 10.1038/ejcn.2009.155. Epub 2010 Jan 20.


This study examined whether the association of household income with fresh fruit and vegetable consumption varies by the level of education. Data were derived from mail surveys carried out during 2000-2002 among 40- to 60-year-old employees of the City of Helsinki (n=8960, response rate 67%). Education was categorized into three levels, and the household income was divided into quartiles weighted by household size. The outcome was consumption of fresh fruit and vegetables at least twice a day (58% among women and 33% among men). Beta-binomial regression analysis was used. Among women, higher income resulted in equally higher consumption of fruit and vegetables at all educational levels, that is, similar among those with low, intermediate and high education. Among men, the pattern was otherwise similar; however, men with intermediate education differed from those with low education. We conclude that the absolute cost of healthy food is likely to have a role across all income groups.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Diet Surveys
  • Educational Status*
  • Feeding Behavior
  • Female
  • Finland
  • Fruit* / economics
  • Humans
  • Income*
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Sex Distribution
  • Vegetables* / economics