Low Intake of Fiber-rich Foods by Young Children in a Michigan Cohort

Student Classification

Kyra Pierce, North Carolina Agricultural and Technical State University, Department of Family Consumer Sciences Sarah S. Comstock, Michigan State University, Department of Food Science and Human Nutrition

Document Type


Publication Date

Spring 2023


Fiber is an essential nutrient for all stages of life. Fiber intake in children supports healthy digestion, heart health, blood sugar regulation, bowel flow and can strengthen the immune system. The USDA recommended the daily amount of fiber for children one to three years of age is 19 grams of fiber and children four to six years of age is 25 grams of fiber. The RDA states that from infancy to 18 years of age children are at risk of consuming inadequate fiber. However, there is little information about consumption of fiber among children between the ages 1 to 5 years and living in Michigan. Therefore, the objective of this study was to determine the intake of fiber-rich foods among such children. To conduct this study dietary fiber intake questionnaires were collected for the children. The survey determined the intake of fiber-rich foods over the span of a week. Responses determined the types of fiber-rich foods consumed on a daily basis. Surveys were mailed to parents, who completed the survey, and mailed the survey to the lab where research assistants calculated the data. It is expected that fiber intake of younger children will be lower than older children. Intake of fiber-rich food was low across all ages. Six month old infants consumed the least amount of any food. Thirty-six, forty-eight and sixty month old children consumed similar amounts of each. This data suggests that we must continue to develop methods which help families increase their children’s intake of fiber-rich foods.

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