NL residents eating healthier, but not yet healthy enough
Netherlands residents have been eating and drinking healthier over the past years. Plant-based food is gaining ground, red and processed meat is losing popularity, and the consumption of tea and water is on the rise. That is evident from the RIVM’s new Food Consumption Survey (VCP) among a representative group of approximately 3,500 children and adults.
Netherlands residents aren’t only eating more fruit and vegetables but also legumes and unsalted nuts. The developments are visible in old and young. But there is still a way to go, the RIVM said. “A side note is that most Dutch people do not yet adhere to the Guidelines for a healthy diet.” The guidelines list which foods and quantities thereof and habits are good for a healthy life.
In its VCP, the RIVM looked at the daily meals of Netherlands residents between the ages of 7 and 69 between 2019 and 2021 and compared the results with previous surveys. Vegetable consumption increased from 128 grams per day in 2007-2010 to 135 grams in 2012-2016 and now stands at 163 grams per day. The percentage of adults who met the vegetable guideline doubled compared to the previous survey, but it is still only 29 percent.
Netherlands residents are also eating more fruit. In previous surveys, fruit consumption was 103 and 117 grams per day. In the most recent edition, it was 129 grams. In the past few years, the amount of red and processed meat consumed was at least 20 percent lower than in 2007 and 2010. Consumption of sugary drinks like soft drinks also decreased significantly. “The grams per day fell from 382 in 2012-2016 to 240 grams now.”
Tea drinking has risen 27 percent since the first survey, from 190 grams per day to 242. Water consumption increased by 51 percent in that period, from 585 to 844 grams.
Reporting by ANP