Taking a dip in the pool - of guacamole

Americans, it turns out, are a nation of dippers. We are coating our vegetables and snacks more often in dips, according to a new survey done for the Association for Dressings and Sauces. Americans dip on a weekly basis - dipping for taste, convenience, fun, and as a way to get children to eat more vegetables.

"Dipping is a fun way to reach your daily vegetable requirement - or can be a quick and easy way to snack," says Pam Chumley, executive director of the Association for Dressings and Sauces. "For whatever motivation, dipping is a hot trend that we're seeing more and more...."

The survey found dipping behaviors that drew distinct lines between gender and age. According to the survey, men dip more frequently than women. Women like spinach and vegetable dips the best and are more likely than men to go "skinny-dipping," or dip using nutritious foods such as raw vegetables and fruit slices. Men's favorite dips: creamy ranch dressing and salsa. Onion was ranked as the No. 1 dip flavor.

Twenty-two percent of parents polled said they use dips to get their children to eat their vegetables. Three out of four people polled use bottled salad dressings for dipping sauces. And among those, creamy ranch is the most used for dipping. Ready-to-eat store-bought dips, homemade dips, and dips made from dry mixes were also popular among those polled.

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