Malaysian Not Eating Enough Fruits
3 August 2016
As strongly recommended by the World Health Organisation (WHO), people should include fruits and vegetables in their daily diet, ideally five times a day. Eating vegetables provides health benefits – people who eat more vegetables and fruits as part of an overall healthy diet are likely to have a reduced risk of some chronic diseases. Vegetables and fruits provide nutrients vital for health and maintenance of our body. Our dietitian, Ms Michelle Low had shares the following;
(as published in iSihat magazine, Dec2015 issue)
- Although fruits are available all year round in our country, the percentage of Malaysians eating fruits is considered very low. Among the factors cited for this include the cost of fruits, poor eating habits cultivated at home and consumption trends based on gender. Women eat fruits more than men as they are more health conscious.
- We need to eat more fruits because it has been recognized as a good source of vitamins and antioxidants, plus they are high in fibre. It may reduce risk of heart disease, obesity, hypertension, prevent nutrient deficiencies and many more. It is recommended that we eat at least 3 servings of fruits in a week.
- There are many appetising ways to encourage children to eat fruits such as making them a fruit salad, cutting it into a variety of shapes and also serving a platter of fruits with a variety colours. Most children will follow their parents’ eating habits and therefore, education on eating fruits is vital.
- A smoothie is better than fruit juice as it gives you the more nutrients from the fruits, including fibre. We should also make a practice to have fruits as our snacks.
- Eating whole fresh fruits is better than taking supplements. We should spend on fruits first rather than a supplement, as it is not necessary to take them if we eat fruits frequently. Let us enjoy eating fruits together with our family at home as a wholesome bonding experience.
By Ms Michelle Low, Dietitian