Food Group and Micronutrient Intake Adequacy among Children, Adults and Elderly Women in Greece Academic Article uri icon

abstract

  • The aim of the present study was to record the percentage of children, adults and elderly women in Greece meeting food and micronutrient intake recommendations. Additionally, the present study was aiming to identify the main food contributors of micronutrient intakes and assess the degree up to which meeting food intake recommendations also ensures micronutrient intake adequacy. Dietary intake data from three studies conducted in Greece (on 9-13-year-old children; 40-60-year-old adults; and 50-75-year-old women) were used to estimate mean intakes, the percentages of subjects meeting food and nutrient intake recommendations and the contribution of six core food groups to nutrient intake adequacy. The present study showed that more than 50% of children, adults and elderly women were failing to consume the recommended portions of vegetables, dairy and grains. Furthermore, children and adults consuming the recommended portions of individual core food groups had significantly lower percentages of inadequate micronutrient intakes compared to their counterparts not meeting food intake recommendations (p < 0.05). Nevertheless, even among those consuming the recommended portions from a specific core food group, the recommended intake of the corresponding micronutrient (for which this food group is the main contributor) was not always met. Indicatively, 18.2%-44.1% and 4.2%-7.0% of the populations under study were not meeting calcium and vitamin C intake recommendations, although they were consuming the recommended portions of dairy and fruits, respectively. In conclusion, these findings highlight the importance for public health policy makers to take all necessary initiatives to support the population in achieving the recommended intakes from all core food groups, but also emphasize on food variety to ensure adequate intake for all micronutrients.

authors

  • Manios, Yannis
  • Moschonis, George
  • Grammatikaki, Evangelia
  • Mavrogianni, Christina
  • van den Heuvel, Ellen
  • Bos, Rolf
  • Singh-Povel, Cecile

publication date

  • 2015