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Nutrición Hospitalaria

versão On-line ISSN 1699-5198versão impressa ISSN 0212-1611


CERVERA BURRIEL, Faustino et al. Food habits and nutritional assessment in a tunisian university population. Nutr. Hosp. [online]. 2014, vol.30, n.6, pp.1350-1358. ISSN 1699-5198.

Introduction: Nutrition and health are of great importance throughout life, in particular in adulthood due to active population is included among the adults. Therefore, it is essential to assess the quality of the diet and the possible conditioning factors. Objectives: The objectives of this study were to characterize food habits and assess the quality of the diet of university students from the Virtual University of Tunisia, a North African country in nutritional transition. Methods: This is a cross-sectional study performed with data collected from a sample of 54 students from this University. For each individual a questionnaire involving socio-economic and demographic data was self-reported. Food consumption was gathered by a 24 hours recall. The assessment of diet quality was conducted by Healthy Eating Index and Mediterranean Diet Score. Results and Discussion: The study revealed that the diet of this population is hypocaloric. The percentage of total energy from proteins was 18% and the percentage of total energy from carbohydrates was about 40%. The diet was high in simple sugars, saturated fat and cholesterol. Apart from oils and fat, the main source of lipids had an animal origin from meat (19%), and the fish group only provided 3% of this macronutrient. According to Healthy Eating Index classification more than 50% of students scored "poor" and more than 40% "needs improvement" about the quality of their diet. The study also showed low adherence rates to the Mediterranean diet.

Palavras-chave : Healthy Eating Index; University population; Food habits; Mediterranean Diet Score.

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