The competition Queenslanders don’t want to be winning
QUEENSLAND is the second unhealthiest state in the nation, with residents not eating their daily serves of fruit and veg and drinking excessively, a major report has found.
The Great Aussie Health Discovery, a survey of more than 11,000 Australians conducted by taste.com.au, revealed only seven per cent of people eat the recommended two serves of fruit and five serves of veg each day, while 80 per cent are regularly consuming highly processed takeaway foods, such as meat pies, hot chips, crisps, biscuits and muffins. And almost 1 in 10 are drinking alcohol at dangerous levels.
Queensland was only narrowly beaten by South Australia for the title of worst in the country, with a health score of 56/100, compared to SA's 55.7/100.
According to the survey, Queenslanders are the biggest drinkers in Australia, with 22 per cent of Sunshine State respondents drinking eight or more units of alcohol per week, compared to the national average of 20 per cent.
Those aged 65-plus were driving the trend, with 17 per cent downing eight-14 drinks a week, compared to just six per cent of 18-24-year-olds. Those aged over 45 were also more likely to be drinking at dangerously high levels, consuming 15-28 drinks a week, while 18-24-year-olds were more likely to abstain from alcohol, with 55 per cent consuming no booze over a seven-day period, compared to the national average of 37 per cent.
Queenslanders were also eating the least fruit in the country, 20 per cent more likely than the national population to not eat any fruit on a typical day. While they were seven per cent more likely than the national average to not eat any vegetables in a typical day.
Dietitian Anne Schneyder, of Nutrition Professionals Australia, blamed myriad mixed messages online for confusing people about which foods are healthy, particularly in terms of fad diets.
"Every new story tells us that we should not be eating a certain item, so many people start to wonder, why bother trying at all?" she said.
Brisbane mum behind health and wellness website and online store The Well Nest, Valeria Ramirez, agreed.
"I think people are just confused to be honest," she said. "There are so many contrary points of view with no legitimate claims backing them up."
She said she always fed her family, including four-year-old son, Orlando, a healthy, balanced diet with more than the recommended fruit and vegetable servings per day.
"It's really important because as soon as we drop the ball with healthy foods we notice the impact it has on health," she said.
"With Orlando in daycare and all the germs that can come from there, if you don't have the right nutrients we don't have much of a fighting chance against the nasties that can come into our house."