New research from the the Produce For Better Health Foundation shows a correlation between produce consumption and people’s reported happiness.
 
A Sept. 13 web seminar showed that 68% of people who eat fruit 6-7 days of the week say they have been happy in the last four weeks, versus 54% of those who have eaten fruit 1-5 days a week and 33% of those who eat fruit zero days.
 
Likewise, 65% of people who eat vegetables 6-7 days of the week say they have been happy in the last four weeks, compared to 55% who have eaten vegetables 1-5 days a week and 42% who eat vegetables zero days.
 
“Happiness corresponds with produce consumption,” said Shelley Maniscalco, registered dietitian and president of Nutrition on Demand, who presented the findings.
 
Another bit of the research showed when consumers were asked to name three reasons why they eat fruits and vegetables, the highest number — 73% — said to stay healthy. The next most common answers were:
> “Like the taste” (66%); 
> Part of a balanced diet (60%); and 
> To lose weight (36%).
 
Wendy Reinhardt Kapsak, president and CEO of PBH, said since September is Fruits and Veggies More Matters Month, the group encourages produce industry stakeholders to inspire consumers to eat more produce, as overall consumption remains flat.
 
PBH identified five key actions:
> Promote all forms with inclusive language;
> Help consumers see benefits beyond nutrition;
> Support all forms of fruits and vegetables;
> Be an agent for change in diet; and
> Nudge Americans to eat just one more (one more day a week of produce consumption and one more cup or serving per day).