Suggestible you, me and our preschool kids and grandkids.

A new study says the use of plates with pictures of fruits and vegetables can increase levels of produce consumption among preschool children.

Published at the JAMA Network online, the study, according to a report in, involved measuring the amounts of fruits and vegetables eaten by 235 children at a Colorado preschool. 

From the report:

At the school, children were fed family-style, which means prepared food was put into large containers and set on a table where the children were able to help themselves. In the first go-round, plain white plates were used by the children. Then, four weeks later, the children were given segmented plates with pictures of fruit and vegetables in designated compartments.

In comparing the amounts of fruits and vegetables used, the researchers found that the children dished themselves on average 13.82 grams more vegetables when using the segmented plates compared to the plain white ones. They also ate on average 7.54 grams more vegetables when using the segmented plates. They report also that the children ate slightly more fruit as well, but the difference was not considered to be statistically significant.


TK: Along with salad bars to schools, perhaps the industry should provide fruit- and veggie- themed plates so the kids will get the idea of half-a-plate from the get-go. And, one can hope, for the rest of their impressionable lives. 

In the realm of current research that is good news for the industry, don’t miss the report that high consumption of fruits and vegetables could lower breast cancer risk. 

Researchers from the Harvard School of Public Health found, according to Science Daily, that women who ate more than 5.5 servings of fruits and vegetables each day had an 11% lower risk of breast cancer than those who ate 2.5 or fewer servings.