The Cost of Low Consumption
Vegetables and fruit have been shown to protect against heart disease, strokes and high blood pressure (World Health Organisation 2003a).
There is evidence that fresh produce protects against cancers of the mouth, larynx, pharynx, oesophagus and stomach. These studies have also cited fruit as an effective protector from lung cancer (World Cancer Research Fund and American Institute for Cancer Research 2007).
In 2003 the Ministry of Health released a report on ‘Nutrition and the Burden of Disease’, which revealed that if all New Zealanders ate 5 serves of fruit and vegetables daily, there would be ~1550 fewer deaths in the country each year. The report showed that a diet containing too little fruit and vegetables can contribute to about 6% of all deaths.