GUELPH – Good in Every Grain, a public-facing educational campaign from Grain Farmers of Ontario, has released results from a recent survey on insights of Ontarians’ grain choices and habits.
Younger Ontarians (18 – 34) surveyed are bigger consumers of grains with 77 percent eating grains every day and 43 percent saying they always look for whole grains when making purchasing decisions, while Ontarians ages 35-54 were less likely to look for whole grains.
“As we age, the need for the thoughtful inclusion of fibre in our diets actually increases, so looking at this survey, we want to see more people of every age embracing those grains and ensuring that they are getting those vital nutrients,” said Victoria Berry, manager of communications at Grain Farmers of Ontario. “We also clearly have some work to do in educating people on the daily recommended servings of grains with 43 percent of survey respondents not knowing how many daily grain servings are recommended by Health Canada.”
Younger Ontarians were significantly more likely to say they should be eating more servings of grains per day, estimating an average of five servings per day compared to older Ontarians who think it is closer to four servings per day. Canada’s Food Guide suggests six to eight servings per day, with grains making up 25 percent, or one quarter, of a healthy dinner plate. Health Canada also recommends that at least half of daily grain choices be whole grain.
With many different types of grains to choose from like barley, corn, oats and wheat, grains have the unique combination of healthy fats, fibre, vitamins and minerals that help reduce the risk of heart disease, diabetes, some cancers, and play a role in maintaining a healthy weight.
“The adoption of healthy grains in daily diets provides a lifetime of health benefits. It is never too late in life to reap the health benefits that grains provide,” said Michelle Jaelin, registered dietitian. “Eating to ensure you have beneficial nutrients including fibre, vitamins and minerals is a great way to shape your eating habits and help your health.”