Comparison of meal patterns across five European countries using standardized 24-h recall (GloboDiet) data from the EFCOVAL project

Min Kyung Park, Heinz Freisling, Ena Huseinovic, Anna Winkvist, Inge Huybrechts, Sandra Patricia Crispim, Jeanne H.M. de Vries, Anouk Geelen, Maryse Niekerk, Caroline van Rossum, Nadia Slimani*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleAcademicpeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)

Abstract

Purpose: To examine meal patterns in terms of frequency and circadian timing of eating in five European countries participating in the EFCOVAL project. Methods: In this cross-sectional study, 559 men and women, aged 44–65 years, were recruited in Belgium, the Czech Republic, France (Southern part), The Netherlands, and Norway. Dietary data were collected by trained interviewers using standardized computerised 24-h recalls (GloboDiet). Means ± SE of (1) eating frequency, (2) overnight fasting, and (3) time between eating occasions were estimated by country using means from 2 days of 24-h recalls. We also estimated the frequency of eating occasions per hour by country as well as the proportional energy intake of meals/snacks by country compared to the mean energy intake of all countries. Results: Mean eating frequency ranged from 4.3 times/day in France to 7.1 times/day in The Netherlands (p <0.05). Mean overnight fasting was shortest in the Netherlands (9.2 h) and longest in Czech Republic (10.9 h) (p <0.05). Mean time between single eating occasions was shortest in The Netherlands (2.4 h) and longest in France (4.3 h) (p <0.05). Different patterns of energy intake by meals and snacks throughout the day were observed across the five countries. Conclusions: We observed distinct differences in meal patterns across the five European countries included in the current study in terms of frequency and circadian timing of eating, and the proportion of energy intake from eating occasions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1045-1057
Number of pages13
JournalEuropean Journal of Nutrition
Volume57
Issue number3
Early online date8 Mar 2017
DOIs
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2018

Keywords

  • Eating frequency
  • EFCOVAL
  • Food consumption
  • GloboDiet/EPIC-Soft
  • Meal/snack pattern
  • Snacking

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    Park, M. K., Freisling, H., Huseinovic, E., Winkvist, A., Huybrechts, I., Crispim, S. P., ... Slimani, N. (2018). Comparison of meal patterns across five European countries using standardized 24-h recall (GloboDiet) data from the EFCOVAL project. European Journal of Nutrition, 57(3), 1045-1057. https://doi.org/10.1007/s00394-017-1388-0