The Healthy Eating Quiz (HEQ) is a brief diet quality assessment tool designed to provide some general guidance related to variety of foods from the core healthy food groups that you typically consume at least weekly and to suggest areas which could be improved.
No single food contains all the nutrients needed to stay healthy. People who eat a wider variety of foods are more likely to get the necessary nutrients, and to be healthy and stay healthy. Having a higher diet quality score is associated with a lower risk of some health outcomes, including biomarkers of disease and risk of heart disease, some cancers and death.
The HEQ is adapted from an existing dietary assessment tool; the Australian Recommended Food Score (ARFS). The Australian Recommended Food Score has been previously validated in adults, children and adolescents, and toddlers.
The HEQ is not designed to account for individual health problems or food allergies and intolerances. Dietary advice for food allergies and intolerances requires an individualised and comprehensive assessment of dietary intake that considers the specific allergies and intolerances, potential dietary sources of those, and any other medical conditions. This cannot be achieved within a brief dietary assessment tool such as the Healthy Eating Quiz. If you have allergies and intolerances you can still use the Healthy Eating Quiz for some general healthy eating advice. However, it is recommended to see your GP or an Accredited Practising Dietitian for individualised dietary advice.
The Healthy Eating Quiz is designed to provide some general guidance on the variety of foods from the core healthy food groups that you typically consume at least weekly and areas that could be improved. It is not designed to account for medical conditions or prescribed medications. Dietary advice for a medical condition requires an individualised and comprehensive assessment of diet that considers the specific diet-disease relationship. This cannot be achieved within a brief dietary assessment tool such as the Healthy Eating Quiz. If you have a medical condition or are taking prescribed medications you can still use the Healthy Eating Quiz for some general healthy eating advice. However, it is advised to seek individualised dietary advice from your GP or an Accredited Practising Dietitian.
The Healthy Eating Quiz asks whether you follow a vegetarian diet. This is accounted for in the scoring and feedback. For those indicating they are a vegetarian, the protein subscale, which includes questions about meat, fish and chicken is not scored and the protein subscale which includes questions about vegetarian alternatives is weighted to reflect the same number of points as there are in the meat/fish/chicken subscale. This is so your score is out of the same total number of points whether you are a vegetarian or an omnivore.
The Healthy Eating Quiz is aligned with the Australian Dietary Guidelines, and not to any particular type of dietary pattern, such as vegan, pescatarian or flexitarian. The HEQ is intended to provide feedback on how your intake aligns with the five core nutrient-rich food groups in the Australian Dietary Guidelines. The HEQ does not specifically account for the various types of diets that people may be following, with the exception of a vegetarian diet. You can still use the Healthy Eating Quiz for some general healthy eating advice, however keep this in mind as your score/feedback may be different than you expect.
The Healthy Eating Quiz is intended to provide feedback on how your intake aligns with each of the five food groups in the Australian Dietary Guidelines. If you do not consume some entire food groups or have a limited variety of foods within a food group then your score for these groups will be low and the feedback will suggest broadening the variety of foods within these food groups. You can still use the Healthy Eating Quiz for some general healthy eating advice, however keep this in mind when you receive your score/feedback.
The Healthy Eating Quiz asks about foods aligned with recommendations in the Australian Dietary Guidelines. This is so that the HEQ feedback and suggestions can be used to help people to improve their dietary variety and nutrient intakes, in line with recommendations based on nutrition research. It also offers practical suggestions that could be easily incorporated into current dietary patterns. Some sauces and condiments are a good source of specific vitamins and minerals. Make sure to choose low salt and no added sugar varieties as not all sauces and condiments are recommended.
The Healthy Eating Quiz is intended as a brief and easy to use tool to provide feedback on how your intake aligns with foods recommended in the five food groups in the Australian Dietary Guidelines. The quiz focuses on the variety of foods within each of the food groups that you usually have each week. For a more in-depth analysis of your dietary patterns, including intakes of energy-dense, nutrient-poor foods, also called discretionary or non-core foods, consider trying the Australian Eating Survey (AES). The AES gives an analysis of your usual food patterns and generates a comparison of nutrient intake to Australian nutrient recommendations, including protein, carbohydrate, fat, dietary fibre and 13 vitamins and minerals.
The Healthy Eating Quiz is designed to be quick and easy to complete. Limiting the response options is one aspect of that. The other reason is that our research has shown that the variety of foods usually consumed each week has additional health benefits compared to having limited variety. This means that the HEQ focuses on the variety of foods rather than frequency or quantity. Variety means that you consume a more varied range of the micro- nutrients including vitamins, minerals, phytonutrients and types of dietary fibre. For a more in-depth analysis of your diet consider trying the Australian Eating Survey (AES). The AES gives a personalised analysis of your usual food and nutrient intake and compares your intake of protein, carbohydrates, fats, and 13 vitamins and minerals to Australian nutrient recommendations.
The Healthy Eating Quiz focuses on variety of foods within each food group usually consumed over a week and not the quantity. This is because no single food contains all the nutrients needed to function and stay healthy. Eating a variety of foods means you are more likely to meet your nutrient requirements. If you were having 5 serves of vegetables each day and it was all eaten as 5 serves of potato or as only 2-3 different types of vegetables most days, then you would also be getting just the same limited variety of nutrients and types of dietary fibre. Research has shown that boosting variety within each of the healthy core food groups is associated with better health and well-being over time. Boosting variety will also lead to an increase in your Healthy Eating Quiz score.
is essential to function and stay healthy. Water is the best choice as it is the optimal fluid for hydrating our bodies and it does not contain any energy. Other fluids can also count towards your fluid intake, and especially those which have a high water content such as tea and flavoured waters.