US adults' fruit and vegetable intakes, 1989 to 1991: a revised baseline for the Healthy People 2000 objective

Am J Public Health. 1995 Dec;85(12):1623-9. doi: 10.2105/ajph.85.12.1623.


Objectives: This study provides revised baseline data for the Healthy People 2000 objective related to fruit and vegetable intakes, accounting for fruits and vegetable intakes, accounting for fruits and vegetables from all sources and measuring servings in a manner consistent with current dietary guidance.

Methods: Dietary data from 8181 adults in the US Department of Agriculture's 1989-1991 Continuing Surveys of Food Intakes by Individuals were examined. All foods were disaggregated into their component ingredients; all fruit and vegetable ingredients were assigned specific weights to correspond to a serving as defined by current dietary guidance materials; and the number of servings was tallied.

Results: While mean intakes of fruits and vegetables--4.3 servings per day--were not far from the Year 2000 objective, only 32% of American adults' intakes met the objective. When more stringent standards were set either to compensate for higher calorie levels or to achieve the balance between fruits and vegetables suggested in current guidance, only 24% and 12%, respectively, met the recommendations.

Conclusions: These results suggest a need to develop strategies for overcoming barriers to eating fruits and vegetables.

MeSH terms

  • Adult
  • Diet / statistics & numerical data
  • Diet / trends*
  • Diet Surveys
  • Female
  • Fruit*
  • Health Promotion
  • Health Services Needs and Demand
  • Humans
  • Income
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Nutrition Policy
  • Nutritional Requirements
  • United States
  • Vegetables*