4727.0.55.008 - Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Survey: Consumption of Food Groups from the Australian Dietary Guidelines, 2012-13  
ARCHIVED ISSUE Released at 11:30 AM (CANBERRA TIME) 02/11/2016  First Issue
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UNSATURATED SPREADS AND OILS

The Australian Dietary Guidelines recommend that Australians limit consumption of foods containing saturated fats because of the evidence linking their consumption with poorer blood lipid profiles and cardiovascular disease.1 Previous results2 from the 2012-13 NATSINPAS showed Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people derived an estimated 13.1% of their dietary energy from saturated and trans-fats, exceeding the 10% limit recommended to reduce chronic disease risk.3

In contrast to saturated fats, consumption of polyunsaturated and monounsaturated fats is an important part of a healthy dietary pattern, supplying essential fatty acids and carrying fat soluble vitamins.1 These fats may be readily sourced from many foods within the five food groups such as nuts, legumes/beans, avocado, oats, fish, lean meats and eggs.1 In addition to the health benefits of unsaturated fats, the Guidelines acknowledge the palatability role played by additional fat with certain foods. Therefore, the Guidelines recommend small allowances of unsaturated spreads and oils which keep the extra energy from these foods within the total energy constraints of the diet.


How much is a serve of unsaturated spreads and oils?

A standard serve is (250 kJ) or:
  • 10 g polyunsaturated spread
  • 10 g monounsaturated spread
  • 7 g monounsaturated or polyunsaturated oil (e.g. olive, canola or sunflower oil)
  • 10 g tree nuts or peanuts or nout pastes/butters*

*Nuts/seeds also contribute to serves within the lean meat and poultry, fish, eggs, tofu, nuts and seeds and legumes/beans group

Source: National Health and Medical Research Council1



The following analysis is based on the measurement of unsaturated spreads and oils in the 2012-13 NATSINPAS. The foods contributing to this group include margarines and oils made from polyunsaturated and monounsaturated oils, nuts and nut pastes and products containing any of these ingredients.4


CONSUMPTION OF UNSATURATED SPREADS AND OILS

In 2012-13, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 2 years and over consumed an average 1.4 serves of unsaturated spreads and oils from non-discretionary sources. Consumption of unsaturated spreads and oils increased with age, children aged 2-18 years having 1.1 serves on average, while adults 19 years and over consumed 1.7 serves on average. Males consumed more serves of unsaturated spreads and oils than females (1.6 serves compared to 1.3 serves).

This graph shows the mean serves consumed per day of unsaturated fats and oils from non-discretionary sources for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people aged 2-70 years by age group and sex. See table 1.1
    (a) Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
    (b) Based on Day 1. See Glossary for definition.
    (c) From non-discretionary sources.
    Source: National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey, 2012-13.


The average daily consumption of unsaturated spreads and oils for each age-sex group of Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, with the exception of children aged 2-13 years, was significantly lower than the respective recommend allowance.

Unsaturated spreads and oils: Recommended number of serves per day and average serves consumed




Age group (years)

Recommended minimum(a)

Average(b)



Serves

Serves






Males

Females

Males

Females


2-3



1.0

0.7


4-8

1

1

0.9

0.9


9-11

1

1

1.3

1.0


12-13

1

1

1.7

1.4


14-18

2

2*

1.5

1.2


19-50

4

2*

1.9

1.5


51-70

4

2

1.7

1.4


71+

2

2

..

..


Total(c)

..

..

1.6

1.3




(a) National Health and Medical Research Council, 2013, Australian Dietary Guidelines https://www.nhmrc.gov.au/_files_nhmrc/publications/attachments/n55_australian_dietary_guidelines_130530.pdf
(b) Daily average consumed from non-discretionary sources
(c) Includes persons aged 71 years and over.
.. Not available.
*For pregnant and breastfeeding women, the recommended allowance for unsaturated spreads and oils is 2 serves.
Source: National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey, 2012-13


SOURCES OF UNSATURATED SPREADS AND OILS

Unsaturated spreads and oils can come from a wide variety of non-discretionary food sources, although the main food sources can be broadly grouped into five main categories. These were:
    • Fats and oils (mostly margarine and table spreads) contributed 28% of unsaturated spreads and oils consumption.
    • Meat and poultry dishes made up 27%, with a higher contribution for people living In remote areas compared with non-remote areas (41% compared with 26%).
    • Nuts and seeds made up 16% of this group.
    • Mixed dishes where cereal is a major component (e.g. non-discretionary pizzas, burgers, pasta) contributed 13%.
    • Vegetable products and dishes contributed 7% with potato being a major category in this group (3.8%).


BY REMOTENESS

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people living in remote areas consumed 1.2 serves of unsaturated spreads and oils; this was less than those in non-remote areas who consumed 1.5 serves on average.


COMPARED WITH NON-INDIGENOUS

On average, Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people consumed less serves of unsaturated spreads and oils than non-Indigenous people (1.4 and 2.0 serves respectively).

This graph shows the mean serves consumed per day of unsaturated fats and oils from non-discretionary sources for Australians aged 2-70 years by age group and Indigenous status. See table 1.1
    (a) Based on Day 1. See Glossary for definition.
    (b) From non-discretionary sources.
    Sources: National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey, 2012-13 and the National Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey, 2011-12


UNSATURATED SPREADS AND OILS FROM DISCRETIONARY SOURCES

Consistent with the advice within the Guidelines around which foods are considered part of healthy dietary pattern, the above comparisons against the recommendations were limited to those foods classed as ‘non-discretionary’. However, previous analysis5 has shown that around two-fifths (41%) of dietary energy comes from the discretionary foods which are characterised as nutrient poor and energy dense and often high in saturated fat, salt or added sugars.

When the ‘discretionary’ food sources are included, the average consumption of unsaturated spreads and oils more than doubles from 1.4 to 3.0 serves across the population. Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people in non-remote areas consumed more serves of unsaturated spreads and oils from discretionary sources than those in remote areas (1.6 serves compared to 1.1 serves).

When discretionary sources are included, men aged 19 years and over were the only group with an average consumption that was less than their respective daily allowance.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people consumed more serves of unsaturated spreads and oils from discretionary sources than non-Indigenous people (1.5 serves compared to 1.2 serves).

This graph shows the mean serves consumed per day of unsaturated fats and oils from discretionary and non-discretionary sources for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander males aged 2-70 years by age group. See table 9.1This graph shows the mean serves consumed per day of unsaturated fats and oils from discretionary and non-discretionary sources for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander females aged 2-70 years by age group. See table 9.1
    (a) Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people.
    (b) Based on Day 1. See Glossary for definition.
    Source: National Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Nutrition and Physical Activity Survey, 2012-13.


Potato products (such as chips and hash browns) were the most common source of discretionary unsaturated spreads and oils, contributing 25%. This was followed by 21% from snack foods, 17% from pastries and 15% from fish dishes and products.


ENDNOTES:

1. National Health and Medical Research Council, 2013, Australian Dietary Guidelines. Canberra: Australian Government. <https://www.nhmrc.gov.au/_files_nhmrc/publications/attachments/n55_australian_dietary_guidelines_130530.pdf >, Last accessed 27/10/2016

2. See Table 2 within Data Cubes from Downloads within 4727.0.55.005 – Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Survey: Nutrition Results – Foods and Nutrients, 2012-13 < https://www.abs.gov.au/AUSSTATS/abs@.nsf/DetailsPage/4727.0.55.0052012-13?OpenDocument>

3. National Health and Medical Research Council and New Zealand Ministry of Health, 2006, Nutrient Reference Values for Australia and New Zealand, Canberra: Australian Government. <http://www.nrv.gov.au/nutrients>, Last accessed 14/10/2016

4. This analysis is based on the measurement of unsaturated spreads and oils in the 2012-13 NATSINPAS. The foods contributing to this group include margarines and oils made from polyunsaturated and monounsaturated oils, nuts and nut pastes and products containing any of these ingredients. For more information see Assessing the 2011-13 AHS against the Australian Dietary Guidelines - Classification System and Database Development Explanatory notes, available from: http://www.foodstandards.gov.au/science/monitoringnutrients/ausnut/

5. See discussion of Discretionary foods from 4727.0.55.005 – Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Health Survey: Nutrition Results - Foods and Nutrients, 2012-13, <https://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/Lookup/by%20Subject/4727.0.55.005~2012-13~Main%20Features~Discretionary%20foods~16>