Food intake in Slovenian adolescents and adherence to the Optimized Mixed Diet: a nationally representative study

Helena Kobe, Matevž Štimec, Cirila Hlastan Ribič, Nataša Fidler Mis
Public Health Nutrition 2012, 15 (4): 600-8

OBJECTIVES: To investigate the food intake of Slovenian adolescents and to compare it with food-based dietary guidelines developed for children and adolescents, named the Optimized Mixed Diet (OMD). The OMD is a useful tool for the evaluation of food intake of adolescents.

DESIGN: All adolescents completed an FFQ at a regional health centre; a subgroup also completed a 3 d weighed dietary protocol at home.

SETTING: This study is a part of the first national representative study on the dietary habits of Slovenian adolescents.

SUBJECTS: This cross-sectional study included a representative sample of 2813 Slovenian adolescents entering high school, aged 14-17 years, from all ten geographical regions of Slovenia.

RESULTS: The greatest deviations from the recommended intakes of the main food groups in the OMD were significantly lower intakes of (P < 0·001, mean): vegetables (179 and 163 g/d in boys and girls, respectively), bread/cereals (271 and 226 g/d), potatoes/rice/pasta (212 and 163 g/d); in boys also a significantly lower intake of fruits (mean: 321 g/d, P < 0·001) and a significantly higher intake of meat/meat products (mean: 126 g/d, P < 0·001). Additionally, the results show too high intake of sugar-sweetened beverages and too low intakes of fish and plant oils in both genders.

CONCLUSIONS: The food intake pattern of Slovenian adolescents deviates markedly from a healthy eating pattern. Nutrition education and interventions are needed for Slovenian adolescents.

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