A new study has found many teenage girls in the UK are not eating the recommended five portions of fruit per day, prompting concern about the long-term implications for their wellbeing.
The latest National Diet and Nutrition Survey - compiled by MRC Human Nutrition Research and the National Centre for Social Research - also found that only 56 per cent of young females consume a sufficient amount of iron.
"It is really important that teenagers eat a balanced diet", said chief medical officer Dame Sally Davies. "Eating well and being active can help prevent serious illnesses such as cancer and heart disease later in life."
Health minister Paul Burstow added that the government plans to step up its Change4Life public health campaign over the coming months, educating youngsters about eating habits and encouraging them to become more active.
Last week, an Oxford University study indicated that vegetarians are at less risk of developing bowel disease than meat-eaters.