Report shows nearly one-third of New York adults eat no fruits or vegetables

The New York State Department of Health (DOH) recently announced the release of a new report that showed about one-third of adults (31.2%) in New York consume no fruits or vegetables per day.

The report, Percentage of Adults Who Consume No Fruits or Vegetables in New York State by County, was based on data from the 2016 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) and presents data on no daily consumption of fruits or vegetables by county. The percentage of adults who consume no fruits or vegetables per day varies by county from 19.5% to 42.4%.

The findings illustrate how barriers to healthy food access are prevalent in many communities around the state. High cost is a deterrent to many, while limited access prevents many others from purchasing the fruits and vegetables that many families may take for granted.

Dietary guidelines recommend eating fruits and vegetables to reduce the risk for diet-related chronic diseases such as cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, some cancers, and obesity.

Jefferson County (north of Syracuse) had the highest rate in the state at 42.4%, while Columbia (south of Albany) and Essex (North Country) tied for the lowest at 19.5%. The 10 counties within Foodlink’s service area had the following rates of adults who reported no daily consumption of fruits and vegetables:

Allegany: 28.6%

Genesee: 33.3%

Livingston: 30.7%

Monroe: 27.5%

Ontario: 23.8%

Orleans: 32.6%

Seneca: 20.6%

Wayne: 33.3%

Wyoming: 24.5%

Yates: 21.0%

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