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Rocz Panstw Zakl Hig. 2012;63(4):477-82.

[Dietary patterns in nursery school children from an urban environment].

[Article in Polish]

Author information

  • 1Zakład Zywienia Człowieka, Akademia Wychowania Fizycznego, Kraków.



A correct dietary pattern optimizes development processes and is a factor in the prevention of diet-related diseases. Attitudes and dietary habits of children, shaped by their family, nursery school and school environments, affect their dietary patterns later in their life.


The aim of the study was to evaluate dietary behaviours and preferences of a group of nursery school children, based on their parents' declarations.


The research was carried out in the spring on a group of 126 parents of children (66 boys and 60 girls) aged 3-6 in Krakow, based on a survey questionnaire constructed by the author. The distribution of the data was presented for the whole sample in general, due to a lack of statistically significant differences in this respect depending on the gender (P>0.05).


The study has demonstrated the prevalence of the 4-5 meal-a-day dietary pattern (97.6%), though with a limited regularity (52.4%), and snacking between main meals (86.5%), usually on sweets (63.5%), fruit (56.3%) and dairy products (42.9%). Daily consumption of wholegrain cereal products was the case in 38.1% of the children, of fruit in 50.8% of the children, vegetables in 41.2%, and dairy products in 82% of the children. Fish was served to the children usually once a week (50%). Parents gave their children whole fat products more frequently than reduced fat versions (54.8% vs 45.2%). The children consumed fast food products less frequently than once a month (61.7%), while 26.4% consumed them every month and 10.3 % every week. A common mistake involved a high prevalence of sweets, which were consumed daily by 57.9% of the group. Children preferably drank fruit juices (62.7%), tea (45.2%) and mineral water (39.7%), and consumed flour products (84.1%), sweets and confectionery products (42.1%) and meat products (30.2%). Products disliked by children, according to their parents' reports, included vegetables (63.5%), milk (48.4%) and grits (34.1%).


A preference for the consumption of sweets and confectionery, fruit, fruit juices and flour products demonstrated that the children had a liking for the sweet taste.

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