Food Sources of Shortfall Nutrients among Latin Americans
Abstract: Increased consumption of energy-dense, nutrient-poor foods can lead to inadequate intakes of shortfall nutrients, including vitamin A, D, C, and E, dietary folate, calcium, iron, magnesium, potassium, and fiber. The objective was to examine the prevalence of inadequate intake of shortfall nutrients and identify food sources of shortfall nutrients in eight Latin American countries. Data from ELANS, a multi-country, population-based study of 9218 adolescents and adults were used. Dietary intake was collected through two 24 h Recalls from participants living in urban areas of Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Colombia, Ecuador, Peru, and Venezuela. Foods and beverages were classified using the adapted version of the NHANES “What We Eat in America” system. Nutrients inadequacy was estimated using the Institute of Medicine recommendations and descriptive statistics were calculated. Prevalence of inadequacy was above 50% for most of the nutrients, which the exception of vitamin C with a prevalence of inadequacy of 39%. Milk, cheese, seafoods, breads, and fruit juices/drinks were among the top 5 sources for each of the 10 shortfall nutrients examined. Many food categories were top contributors to more than one dietary component examined. Understanding the nutrient intake and food sources can help inform dietary guidance and intervention approaches.