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[Macronutrients, fiber, fatty acids and minerals in meals served in a university dining room].

  • Alfonzo, G C
  • Cioccia, A M
  • Hevia, P
Published Article
Archivos latinoamericanos de nutrición
Publication Date
Jun 01, 2001
PMID: 11678047


We studied the nutritional quality of six lunch menus offered in a university's dining room located in Caracas City. Each of these menus included soup, main dish, salad, bread and dessert. The results showed that each lunch offered 15 to 20 different kinds of foods. Comparing the results of the chemical analysis of the edible part of these lunch menus with the requirements of the students users of the university dining room, indicated that on the average, they offered 37% and 57% of the energy and protein requirements, 30% to 50% of the iron requirements and a substantial amount of dietary fiber. Their fat concentration, according to the dietary habits of the venezuelan population, was low and ranged from 15% to 25% of the total calories. The analysis of the fatty acids present in two of the six studied menus, showed that the proportion of saturated: monoinsaturated: polyinsaturated was approximately 2:1:1. Despite the predominance of the saturated, the proportion of the total calories present in these lunch menus, provided by these fatty acids, was on the average less than 10%. In addition, these meals offered more sodium than potassium and the calculated amount of sodium chloride they provided, was close to the total amount recommended to be consumed in a day. In general, the results of this study, showed that the lunch offered by this university dining room can fulfill an important proportion of the students' nutritional requirements, providing at the same time a meal adjusted to modern nutritional guidelines for good health. The results also emphasize the advantages of the traditional Venezuelan food, since the Venezuelan national plate, had the least amount of fat and salt of all the menus here analyzed.

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