Fruit food group

Fruit skewer image

 

Foods in the fruit food group are an abundant source of nutrients, including: Vitamin C, folate, potassium and dietary fibre. Evidence statements from the Australian Dietary Guidelines suggest that including the recommended serves of fruit in a balanced daily diet can help decrease the risk of chronic diseases such as obesity, coronary heart disease and stroke. There is also evidence that minerals such as potassium and magnesium found in fruit are linked to lower blood pressure.1 However the National Health Survey revealed just over half (54%) of the Australian population met the recommended serves of fruit.2

Fruit is most nutritious when eaten raw or fresh. The fibre content in fruit juices tends to be lost during the manufacturing process. Juices are also acidic and can contribute to dental erosion.3 Dried fruit may be eaten, however it is higher in kilojoules and, due to its form, may stick to teeth and increase the risk of dental caries.4 If choosing canned fruit, opt for no-added-sugar varieties.

Fruits that are in season should be chosen as they are generally higher in quality and more affordable. As with vegetables, different coloured fruits should be chosen to increase the variety of nutrients in the diet.

Serve recommendations

 
Age group
Serves
Men

19–50

2

 

51–70

2

 

70+

2

Women

19–50

2

 

51–70

2

 

70+

2

 

Pregnant

2

 

Breastfeeding

2

Children

1–2 y/o girls and boys

0.5

 

 2–3 y/o girls and boys

1

 

4–8 y/o girls and boys

1.5

 

9–11 y/o girls and boys

2

 

12–13 y/o girls and boys

2

 

14–18 y/o girls and boys

2

Adapted from the 2013 Australian Dietary Guidelines.

A standard serve is 150g or:

  • 1 medium apple, orange, banana or pear

  • 2 small apricots, plums or kiwi fruits

  • 1 cup diced or canned fruit, with no added sugar.

Or only occasionally:

  • ½ cup (125ml) fruit juice, with no added sugar

  • 30g dried fruit, such as 4 dried apricot halves or 1.5 tablespoons of sultanas.5

Use the Nutrition Calculator to calculate recommended serves of the five food groups for each age and gender group.




1 National Health and Medical Research Council. Australian Dietary Guidelines, Canberra: Commonwealth of Australia; 2013.

2 Australian Bureau of Statistics [Internet]. Canberra: ABS; 2015. Australian Health Survey: Usual Nutrient Intakes, 2011-2012. Cat 4364.0.55.007. [updated 2015 Apr 15; cited 2016 Feb 16]. Available: http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf

3 Salas MM, Nascimento GG, Vargas-Ferreira F, Tarquinio SB, Huysmans MC, Demarco FF. Diet influenced tooth erosion prevalence in children and adolescents: Results of a meta-analysis and meta-regression. J Dent. 2015;43(8):865-75.

4 National Health and Medical Research Council. Fruit [Internet]. Canberra, Commonwealth of Australia, 2015.  Available: https://www.eatforhealth.gov.au/food-essentials/five-food-groups/fruit

5 National Health and Medical Research Council. Fruit [Internet]. Canberra, Commonwealth of Australia, 2015.  Available: https://www.eatforhealth.gov.au/food-essentials/five-food-groups/fruit