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Food Consumption Pattern and Calcium Status of Adolescents in Nnewi, Nigeria



H.N. Henry-Unaeze and C.N. Okonkwo
 
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ABSTRACT

This study investigated the food consumption pattern and calcium status of 200 adolescents (12-19 years) in Nnewi, Anambra State Nigeria. Data were obtained by means of pre-tested standard questionnaire and biochemical analysis of serum to determine calcium status. The result showed that majority of the respondent’s parents were traders (35.5%) and secondary school graduates (40.5%). About 67.5% of the subjects consume 3 meals/day and the frequency of milk consumption was very low (17.7%). Consequently, their mean Body Mass Index (BMI) (19.15±3.06) was within the normal range while their serum calcium concentration (7.12±3.54) was lower than the recommended value (8.10-10.40mg). Sex was significantly related (x2 = 15.22, p = 0.004) to the BMI and intake of milk significantly (p<0.005) affected the level of serum calcium concentration (mg/dl). Moi moi, beans pottage, fried rice and jollof rice were the strongest predictors of serum calcium concentration from food preference. The low serum calcium concentrations were attributed to the fact that the subject’s main sources of calcium were cereals and legumes which most times contain anti-nutritional factors. These results points out the need for nutrition education with emphasis on improved method of food preparation and selection.

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  How to cite this article:

H.N. Henry-Unaeze and C.N. Okonkwo, 2011. Food Consumption Pattern and Calcium Status of Adolescents in Nnewi, Nigeria. Pakistan Journal of Nutrition, 10: 317-321.

DOI: 10.3923/pjn.2011.317.321

URL: https://scialert.net/abstract/?doi=pjn.2011.317.321

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