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Try for 5

Dr Raj P Pathmaraj


It’s National Nutrition Week (October 16–22) and the focus this year is on the number of serves of vegetables Australians are consuming or, better yet, not consuming each day.

Most of us know that the recommended intake is 5 serves of vegetables (fresh, frozen or canned) per day, but the average person only consumes half of this amount. In fact, the Australian Bureau of Statistics reports that just 7% of Australians actually meet the Australian Dietary Guidelines for vegetable servings.

Of course, we know that consuming vegetables as part of a broader diet is important for our overall health. More specifically though, when it comes to the eyes, a balanced diet that includes 5 serves of vegetables may help to reduce the risk of:

Cooked eggs, which themselves are beneficial for eye health, also increase the absorption of nutrients from a number of salad vegetables when eaten together (e.g. in a Caesar salad or nicoise salad).


So what counts as a serve?

A single vegetable serve is 75 grams, which is equivalent to:


And don’t forget that it’s not only vegetables that contribute to general eye health – make sure to include oily fish (e.g. salmon, herring, sardines, tuna), colourful fruits (e.g. blueberries, strawberries and raspberries) and nuts and seeds (e.g. almonds, sunflower seeds, pecans, walnuts) in your diet.

Bon appetit!


More information about National Nutrition Week can be found at http://www.nutritionaustralia.org/national/national-nutrition-week-tryfor5.


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