Eating Habits and Dietary Behaviour of Adolescent Boys & Girls
Aim: The aim of the study was to observe the eating habits and dietary behaviour of adolescent boys and girls. Method: One hundred (N=100, 51 males and 49 females) adolescents between the ages 16-19 years were randomly selected. Each subject was administered with a set of a questionnaire, a 24- hour dietary recall and food frequency questionnaire after taking consents. Height and weight of adolescents were also noted in order to find out their Body Mass Index (BMI).
Results: The mean height and weight of boys was 168.9 cm and 67.2 kg and that of girls was 155.8cm and 52.7 kg respectively. The 13.7% of the boys were found to be overweight as compared to only 2.1% of girls. A very irregular food eating pattern was observed in both boys and girls. The 63% of subjects followed 3-meals per day pattern of food intake. In addition to 3-meals per day pattern, 57% of subjects were also taking snacks more than two times in a day. The 45% subjects said that they were eating snacks because they ‘missed a meal’ and an astonishing 29% said they were habituated to take snacks.
Conclusion: It was concluded that there was an irregular eating meal pattern in the adolescents. They consumed lots of snacks because they missed regular meals especially breakfast. Some of them were also habituated to take snacks or eating junk food like fried food, chips, instant noodles etc
Keywords - BMI, Junk Food, Snacking, RDA.