January 30/Santa Monica, Calif./PRNewswire -- Teens are not consuming enough whole grain foods, according to a recent study from the University of Minnesota at St. Paul and featured in the January issue of Food Nutrition & Science.

The study, that analyzed adolescents aged 12-19 years old in the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES, 1999-2004), found that less than one third consumed more than .5 whole grain ounce equivalents per day.

The most recent Dietary Guidelines for Americans, released in January 2011 recommends that all adults eat at least half their grains as whole grains -- at least three-to-five servings of whole grains. Even children need two-to-three servings or more. According to the Whole Grains Council, consumption lags far behind these recommendations. For example, the average American eats less than one daily serving of whole grains, and some studies show that over 40% of Americans never eat whole grains at all.

"This is an opportunity for food companies, school nutrition programs and retailers to market the health benefits of grains and create easier access to products and recipes," says Phil Lempert, founder of Food Nutrition & Science and CEO of The Lempert Report and SupermarketGuru.com. "Whole grain intake has been associated with improved chronic disease risk factors and weight status in adults, and we know that healthy food habits start young."

 From the January 27, 2012, Prepared Foods' Daily News.