British Nutrition Foundation survey reveals widespread confusion about healthy eating

The survey suggests that nearly a quarter (24 percent) of primary schoolchildren (aged 7-11 years) and 17 percent of older children (11-16 years) think that chicken counts towards your 5-A-DAY, while nearly a fifth ( 19 percent) of primary school children think that cheese can be one of your 5-A-DAY.

Only 38 percent of all UK adults and 23 percent of older children know that carrots contain fiber, while only 60 percent of secondary schoolchildren and 36 percent of primary schoolchildren believe that wholemeal bread is a source of fiber. Nearly a quarter (24 percent) of all schoolchildren think that chicken is a source of fiber, although it provides no fiber at all.

Add 79 percent of adults, 91 percent of secondary schoolchildren and 70 percent of primary schoolchildren correctly say that chicken provides protein but only half of all adults, 46 percent of older children and 29 percent of younger children think that chickpeas are a source of protein. This is despite the fact that canned chickpeas are a rich source of protein, with an average adult portion providing around a fifth of the average adult’s recommended intake per day (45g for females and 56g for males).

The survey also shows that many people do not currently eat, or have never tried, a range of plant foods, such as beans and lentils, which provide essential nutrients like protein and fiber. One third of adults and more than half (55 percent) of schoolchildren reported that they have never tried lentils, one third of adults and 46 percent of schoolchildren have never tried chickpeas and over a quarter (28 percent) of adults and 48 percent of children have never tried kidney beans.

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