Adults eat twice as many fruits and vegetables as they did when they were children and take in less fat and sugar, according to a new study.

Parents, partners and children were some of the biggest influences on people’s diets, nutritionists at the University of Newcastle found. They studied the eating habits of 200 children aged 11 and 12 and then revisited the same people in their early 30s.



But a third of participants in the study said busy lifestyles meant they couldn’t prepare healthy meals.



“These people were more likely to have smaller intakes of fruit and vegetables over the 20 years than those who did not say a lack of time had influenced their diet.



“However, it was perceived lack of time, rather than actual free time, that influenced people’s food choices,” the researchers said.



There was also a divergence between the sexes when it came to the ability of partners to sway eating habits.



A third of people, mainly men, said their partners had a positive influence on their diet while about 10 percent of participants, mainly women, said the effect was negative.



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