Nutritional deficiencies detected in popular restaurants in Brazil

The Popular Restaurants Program is part of the Food and Nutrition Security System implemented by the Brazilian government to fight obesity and associated chronic diseases. The program aims to offer nutritionally balanced and safe meals at lunch hour, at a low cost. Evaluating this program is essential to establish whether the initiative is promoting food security in this population and thus contributing to decreased obesity in the country. The present study evaluated the prevalence of inadequate nutrient intake in popular restaurants in the Distrito Federal (DF), and the nutritional status of the target population. A cross-sectional study was carried out with 267 individuals who ate lunch at one of the six popular restaurants in the DF. Nutritional status of the population was evaluated by Body Mass Index (BMI) and waist circumference. Food intake at lunch was determined by dish weight and direct observation of dish composition. The assessment of nutrient intake at lunch was done according to dietary recommended intake document. According to BMI classification, 13.9% (n = 37) of individuals were obese, 36.3% (n = 97) were overweight, and 0.4% (n = 01) undernourished. The distribution of the macronutrient intake at lunch was within the acceptable macronutrient distribution ranges. Intakes of micronutrients with Estimated Average Requirement values show that more than 50% of individuals consumed inadequate amounts of B1, B2, B3, Ca, and Zn and more than 30% of individuals consumed inadequate amounts of B6 and Mg, at lunch. The mean sodium intake at lunch was at least 3 times the Adequate Intake value for this micronutrient. The results show that the Popular Restaurants Program must improve the nutritional quality of the meal being offered by increasing the intake of vitamins and minerals and decreasing the amount of sodium chloride used in meal preparation.

Karin Eleonora Sávio de Oliveira, Amanda Branquinho Silva, Eduardo Freitas da Silva, Rita de Cássia Coelho de Almeida Akutsu and Sandra Fernandes Arruda
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Int J Inf Res Rev
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