LAUSANNE, Switzerland, May 21, 2012 /PRNewswire/ --
Whole grain intake among European children and teenagers falls woefully below recommendations, according to new research presented today at the Whole Grain Summit 2012, in Minneapolis, USA.
Researchers from the Institute of Food and Health, University College Dublin, examined a range of whole grain consumption data from a variety of different countries, looking at the types and amounts of foods eaten containing whole grain. The data showed that, despite the growing body of evidence on the positive benefits of including whole grain in the diet, intake levels still fall below the 48g/day recommendation - in the absence of a global recommendation for whole grain consumption, the US recommendation of 48g/day of whole grain is widely used as a benchmark.
Dr Anne Nugent, University College Dublin, Ireland, who conducted the research, explained: "The trend is clear that children and teenagers are not eating enough wholegrain. Data from Ireland alone indicates that around 90% of under 17 year olds are not eating enough whole grain."
The research presented, which included data from national food surveys undertaken in Ireland, showed that ready to eat breakfast cereals made with whole grains were by far the main contributors to whole grains in the diets of the under 17 year olds.
CPW nutritionist Brigid McKevith commenting on the findings said, "Similar to children in Ireland, children in the U.K. also have low intakes of whole grain. Average individual intake in children and teenagers is only 13g per day and a quarter do not consumer any whole grain at all. Starting each day with a breakfast cereal made with whole grain is an easy and tasty way for children to increase their whole grain intake."
The researchers at the Whole Grain Summit concluded that consumers are potentially unaware of how much whole grain should be included in the diet and that a global guideline could provide further guidance.
Notes to Editor
About Nestlé breakfast cereals
Nestlé breakfast cereals are manufactured by Cereal Partners Worldwide (CPW). CPW was formed in 1990 as a joint venture between Nestlé S.A. and General Mills, to provide and distribute ready-to-eat breakfast cereals and cereal bars worldwide outside North America.
1. Analysis of the National Children's Food Survey and the National Teen's Food Survey, presented at the Whole Grains Summit (2012). Report on Whole Grain Intakes in Irish Children and Teenagers. Irish Universities Nutrition Alliance.
2. Thane et al (2005) Whole-grain intake of British young people aged 4-18. British Journal of Nutrition 94(5):825-831
SOURCE CPW (Cereal Partners Worldwide)