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Diets rich in fruits and vegetables are associated with a lower risk of chronic diseases (1,2). US health authorities recommend a minimum of 5 servings of fruits and vegetables a day (3,4), and the World Health Organization recommends a daily intake of at least 400 g fruits and vegetables (potatoes not included) (5). Methods to monitor changes in the intake of fruit and vegetables related to the US 5 A Day Campaign have been suggested and discussed (6-9). The Norwegian Nutrition Council now recommends 5 servings of potatoes, vegetables, fruits, berries, and juice per day, corresponding to a total intake of 750 g/day, and a national campaign has been initiated to increase consumption (10). The purpose of this analysis was to evaluate how Norwegians fulfill these recommendations.
Two nationwide dietary surveys were conducted among a random sample of 18-year-old students in = 1,564, response rate = 87%), later called Ungkost (11), and a random sample of 16- to 79-year-old Norwegians (n = 3,144, response rate = 63%), later called Norkost (12,13). Ungkost was conducted during spring 1993 and Norkost during June, September, and November 1993 and March 1994. Dietary data were collected with quantitative food frequency questionnaires designed to measure the habitual intake of about 180 food items during the past year. The frequency of consumption was given per day, per week, or per month, depending on the food item, and was converted to frequency of consumption per day. The portion sizes were units such as slices, glasses, deciliters, and spoons, and were converted into weights on the basis of standard portions (14). Evaluation studies have shown that the …