More Americans are eating '5 a day' but intakes of dark green and cruciferous vegetables remain low

Carol Johnston, C. A. Taylor, J. S. Hampl

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

95 Scopus citations


Epidemiological investigations repeatedly show that the regular consumption of dark green and cruciferous vegetables, tomatoes and citrus fruits in particular is related to reduced cancer risk. We used the 1994-1996 Continuing Survey of Food Intakes by Individuals to examine the types of fruits and vegetables consumed by Americans. The analytic sample population, which consisted of 4806 men and women (25-75 y old) who completed two nonconsecutive 24-h recalls, consumed 3.6 ± 2.3 servings of vegetables and 1.6 ± 2.0 servings of fruit daily. Iceberg lettuce, tomatoes, French fried potatoes, bananas and orange juice were the most commonly consumed fruits and vegetables, accounting for nearly 30% of all fruits and vegetables consumed. The most popular items, lettuce and tomatoes, were consumed by 39-42% of the sample population during the reporting period. Fewer respondents (16-24%) consumed French fried potatoes, bananas or orange juice. Only 3% of the sample consumed broccoli during the reporting period. White potato consumption averaged 1.1 servings daily, with French fried potatoes representing 0.4 serving. Tomato product consumption averaged 0.5 serving daily, dark green vegetable consumption averaged 0.2 serving daily and citrus, berries or melon consumption amounted to nearly 0.8 serving daily. These data indicate that Americans are consuming more fruits and vegetables but that dark green and cruciferous vegetable intake is low.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)3063-3067
Number of pages5
JournalJournal of Nutrition
Issue number12
StatePublished - 2000


  • '5 a day'
  • Fruits
  • Phytochemicals
  • Vegetables

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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