Objective: The Australian Dietary Guidelines recommend Australians choose
mostly whole-grain and/or high-fibre varieties within the grains (cereal) foods
category, with other groups specifying a whole grain Daily Target Intake of 48 g
for Australians aged 9 years or above. The USA and UK report estimates of whole
grain intake that are low and declining, and no comprehensive studies on whole
grain intake in the Australian population are available. The present study aimed to
determine national estimates of whole grain intake, compared with current
Design: A recently updated whole grain database was applied to the most
current population dietary intake data. Single 24 h dietary recall intake data were
reviewed against age group, sex, relative to energy intake and whole grain
Subjects: Australians (2–85 years) participating in the 2011–13 Australian Health
Survey (n 12 153).
Results: The median daily whole grain intake was 21 g for adults (19–85 years)
and 17 g for children/adolescents (2–18 years), or 28 and 23 g/10 MJ per d,
respectively. Approximately 30% of children/adolescents consumed no whole
grains on the day of the survey. Whole grain intake was lowest for the age group
14–18 years (8·7 g/d). Of all participants aged ≥9 years, 73% did not reach the
recommended Daily Target Intake of 48 g.
Conclusions: Whole grain intake in Australia is below recommendations in all age
groups. Adolescents may be a key target for campaigns to increase whole grain
consumption. This study provides the first quantification of absolute whole grain
intake from all food sources in a national sample of Australians.