A random sample of 661 metropolitan Melbourne residents completed a mail questionnaire that included questions to assess the amount of information on diet and health provided by a variety of sources together with the respondents' beliefs about the reliability of this information. There were marked differences in the sources of information found to be both useful and reliable among the different age, gender and social groupings and these give an indication to health educators of the most useful media for reaching different segments of the population. In general older age groups relied on traditional sources of health information such as family doctors while younger age groups used family members. Females made higher use of magazines and newspapers and rated this source just below doctors in terms of reliability. High-social-status females frequently sought significantly more information from organisations such as the National Heart Foundation than low-social-status females. Electronic media rated highly for low-social-status males but high-social-status males found more valuable information in newspapers and magazines.