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Nutrición Hospitalaria

versión On-line ISSN 1699-5198versión impresa ISSN 0212-1611


HERNANDEZ-FERNANDEZ, Isamar Guadalupe et al. Nutritional status and food intake frequency in children with autism spectrum disorder. Nutr. Hosp. [online]. 2023, vol.40, n.2, pp.347-353.  Epub 05-Jun-2023. ISSN 1699-5198.


children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) commonly present food hyperselectivity, which could lead to malnutrition. Furthermore, they are usually observed with eutrophic development, and a tendency to overweight or obesity, which might occur because of food preferences.


to evaluate nutritional status based on anthropometric measurements, and to determine the food intake frequency of Mexican children with ASD.


a cross-sectional study that included 31 children of both sexes, from 5 to 10 years of age, with ASD, recruited for convenience at the Hospital del Niño DIF Hidalgo, Mexico. The variables considered were: weight, height, body mass index, muscle mass, fat mass, and frequency of food consumption.


the eutrophic nutritional status had a prevalence of 70.9 %, overweight of 12.9 % and obesity of 12.9 %. According to sex, women had significantly lower BMI and fat mass, but higher muscle mass than men. When comparing by diagnosis, there were no statistical differences. The most commonly consumed foods were tomato, carrot, banana, apple, corn tortilla, wheat flour bread, rice, beans, chicken, egg, whole milk, vegetable oil, gelatin and sweetened beverages. They mostly consumed plain water every day.


children with ASD have a eutrophic nutritional status in addition to a significant tendency to overweight and obesity, probably related to a high consumption of sweetened beverages and jelly, as well as a low intake of vegetables. This indicates the need for nutritional surveillance to prevent the development of chronic degenerative diseases.

Palabras clave : Nutritional status; Autism spectrum disorder; Food frequency.

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