The Minister of Health, Dr. Fenton Ferguson, has said that Jamaicans are consuming more than 2 and a half times the daily recommended amount of sugars; and one-and-a-half times the recommended intake of fat.
At the same time, only one percent of Jamaicans are meeting the recommended daily portion of vegetables and only two per cent are having enough fruits.
The Minister gave the statistics as he launched the national dietary guideline this morning.
Dr Ferguson said Jamaicans are not making the connection between the intake of food, nutrients, disease and health.
According to the Health Minister, the average Jamaican diet is contributing to the prevalence of non-communicable diseases in the population.
He said non-communicable diseases or NCDs such as heart disease, cancer, high blood pressure, diabetes and respiratory disease is a major problem across the world.
Dr. Fenton Ferguson, the Health Minister.
The new food based dietary guidelines launched today are intended to encourage Jamaicans:
– to eat from all the food groups daily;
– increase their intake of fruits and vegetables;
– eat nuts, peas and beans daily;
– reduce sugars and salt;
Jamaica is the 7th Caribbean nation to implement these guidelines.