Ukrainians generally adhere to a healthy diet, but eat little vegetables, fruits and dairy products, but at the same time a lot of flour products and salt. Oleg Shvets, President of the Association of Dietitians of Ukraine, informed about this.
"Ukrainians generally adhere to a healthy diet - have three meals a day, and prepare food at home from natural products. That's a good thing," Shvets said.
He noted that both adults and children in Ukraine generally consume an adequate amount of meat and meat products.
At the same time, Ukrainians, according to the study, consume few products with proven health benefits - vegetables, fruits and berries, legumes, nuts, fish and dairy products. For example, children consume dairy products on average 185 ml per day, in adolescents this amount is 155 ml per day, and adults consume on average 140 grams per day - this is less than one serving, while it is recommended to consume 2-3 servings during the day dairy products. This leads to a lack of essential vitamins and minerals.
Thus, preschool children receive 11% less than the recommended amount of calcium, and adolescents do not receive 21% of the daily norm of this mineral. Adults lack magnesium and vitamins A, C and E, which significantly worsens their health and quality of life.
The study also showed that Ukrainians use a lot of flour products, mostly from flour of the highest grade. Ukrainians also eat a lot of potatoes instead of healthy vegetables and a lot of saturated fat. This diet contributes to weight gain with an increased risk of dangerous chronic diseases such as diabetes and atherosclerotic cardiovascular lesions leading to heart disease and strokes.
In addition, the nutritionist noted that, thanks to the study, for the first time it was possible to determine the objective level of salt intake. It turned out that Ukrainians significantly exceed the recommended salt intakestarting from early childhood. And it develops a tendency to salty dishes and taste habits for life. So adults men use salt more than 2.5 times, and twice as many women recommended 5 grams per day. This excess leads to an increase in blood pressure and related heart attacks and strokes.
Not least, it affects the health status of Ukrainians and the consumption of a popular source of energy - free sugar. Children of all ages consume a lot of sugar: from 1 to 3 years old - 47 grams per day, preschool children - 56 grams, schoolchildren and adolescents - 67 grams of free sugar per day, whereas, according to recommendations for a healthy diet for adults, the daily norm sugar should not exceed 50 grams per day, and children are advised not to give sweets at all for as long as possible. The nutritionist also noted that it does not matter from which products carbohydrates are obtained - from sugar or honey. At the same time, sugar substitutes are even more dangerous than pure sugar. There is also no difference in the health effects of beetroot, it is sugar or, for example, grape.
In general, according to the expert, “Ukrainians eat better than bad, but worse than good.”
The study involved 1232 people. Participants in the study not only filled out food diaries, but also for 7 days recorded the dishes used in the photo to verify the actual data. As part of the study, a list of more than 800 foods and dishes that Ukrainians most often consume was created for the first time.