Cooking you own food leads to better diet

December 4, 2006

U.S. dieticians say young adults who buy their own food and prepare meals at home have better overall diet quality than those who do not.

University of Minnesota researchers surveyed more than 1,500 people ages 18 to 23 about their food purchasing and preparation habits. The researchers found 31 percent of those surveyed who reported high involvement in meal preparation also consume five servings of fruits or vegetables daily, compared with 3 percent of those reporting very low involvement in meal preparation.

The researchers found the young adults most likely to be involved with food preparation and purchasing tend to be female; Asian, Hispanic or white; and eat at fast-food restaurants fewer than three times per week.

Still, even among study participants who were very involved in food preparation, the study found many young adults do not meet recommended dietary guidelines in what they eat.

The study is detailed in the December issue of the Journal of the American Dietetic Association.

Copyright 2006 by United Press International

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