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Consumption of processed and ultra-processed foods by a young population of Ecuador. An analysis in light of the PAHO model.

By
Jimena Cabrera ,
Jimena Cabrera

Instituto Superior Tecnológico Tungurahua

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Patricia Iza ,
Patricia Iza

Facultad de Ciencias Agropecuarias, Recursos Naturales y del Ambiente, Carrera de Agroindustria, Universidad Estatal de Bolívar, Guaranda – Ecuador

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Carlos Moreno ,
Carlos Moreno

Facultad de Ciencias Agropecuarias, Recursos Naturales y del Ambiente, Carrera de Agroindustria, Universidad Estatal de Bolívar, Guaranda – Ecuador

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Verónica Guanga ,
Verónica Guanga

Facultad de Ciencias de la Salud, Carrera de Nutrición y Dietética, Universidad Técnica de Ambato, Ambato - Ecuador

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Carmen Viteri ,
Carmen Viteri

Facultad de Ciencias de la Salud, Carrera de Nutrición y Dietética, Universidad Técnica de Ambato, Ambato - Ecuador

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Abstract

The purpose of the research was to characterize the habitual consumption of processed and ultra-processed foods, as well as to analyze their nutritional composition in relation to the Nutrient Model proposed by the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO). 2.125 young people participated, with prior informed consent; A food consumption and frequency questionnaire was applied to each participant (a=0,784), including 75 foods and beverages classified into 13 categories. On the other hand, the labels of 89 brands of products purchased by the respondents were reviewed; the analysis included the presence of critical nutrients and the calculation of the percentage of energy contribution. The results revealed that 95% of the population purchased in the last month: desserts (99,1%); candy (95,1%), non-alcoholic beverages (84,8%), among others, with a significant difference in gender, area of residence, and economic income (P<0.050). The amounts of sodium, free sugars, total fats, saturated fats, and trans fats exceed what is indicated in the PAHO Model, by 69,0%, 54,0%, 35,0%, 23,0%, 15,0% respectively. The daily energy contribution per serving was 10,3% ±3,1%, this comes mainly from pre-cooked dishes (soups, broths, creams, instant noodles), 13,6%; beverages (soft drinks, juices, soft drinks, beer, juices and nectars) 13,1; French fries, 12,5%; sausages, 12,4%; pastries, 12,4%; snacks, 10,5%. Concluding that there is a high prevalence in the consumption of processed and ultra-processed foods, with levels of critical nutrients that exceed PAHO recommendations. These findings highlight the need to strengthen policies aimed at reducing the supply and demand of these products.

How to Cite

1.
Cabrera J, Iza P, Moreno C, Guanga V, Viteri C. Consumption of processed and ultra-processed foods by a young population of Ecuador. An analysis in light of the PAHO model. Salud, Ciencia y Tecnología [Internet]. 2024 Apr. 28 [cited 2024 May 28];4:875. Available from: https://revista.saludcyt.ar/ojs/index.php/sct/article/view/875

The article is distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 License. Unless otherwise stated, associated published material is distributed under the same licence.

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