Dietary Intakes of Adolescent Girls in Relation to Weight Status
Background: To examine macronutrient and micronutrient intake of adolescent girls of Tehran, capital of Iran to discover any malnutrition in relation to weight status and dieting.
Methods: A cross-sectional study was conducted. Four hundred 11- to 17-year-old students were selected by multistage cluster sampling from secondary and high schools of Tehran. The information about dietary intakes was taken by food frequency questionnaire and 24-hour recall form. The students' body mass indices (BMIs) were measured and were classified according to National Center for Health Statistics /Center for Disease Control and Prevention (2000) growth charts. Participants were also questioned about body image and dieting.
Results: 6.7% of adolescent girls were classified as being obese, 14.6% overweight, 75.4% normal and 3.2% underweight. Students 11-13 year old, had mean intakes lower than estimated average requirement (EAR) for folic acid, vitamin E, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium and sodium, and 14-18 year old students had mean intakes lower than EAR for niacin, pyridoxine, folic acid, pantothenic acid, vitamin E, calcium, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, sodium and zinc. Obese and overweight adolescents had less carbohydrate, thiamin, niacin, iron and selenium intake. The participants, who were dieting, used significantly less amounts of proteins, carbohydrates, thiamin, niacin, iron, selenium, sodium and zinc.
Conclusion: Knowing the harmful consequences of nutrient deficiency especially in adolescents, nutrition education must be emphasized in schools to promote nutritional literacy.