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Food consumption of Sri Lankan adults: an appraisal of serving characteristics

journal contribution
posted on 2023-05-18, 21:25 authored by Jayawardena, R, Byrne, NM, Soares, MJ, Katulanda, P, Andrew HillsAndrew Hills

OBJECTIVE: The main aim of the present study was to identify food consumption in Sri Lankan adults based on serving characteristics.

DESIGN: Cross-sectional study. Fruits, vegetables, starch, meat, pulses, dairy products and added sugars in the diet were assessed with portion sizes estimated using standard methods.

SETTING: Twelve randomly selected clusters from the Sri Lanka Diabetes and Cardiovascular Study.

SUBJECTS: Six hundred non-institutionalized adults.

RESULTS: The daily intake of fruit (0·43), vegetable (1·73) and dairy (0·39) portions were well below national recommendations. Only 3·5 % of adults consumed the recommended 5 portions of fruits and vegetables/d; over a third of the population consumed no dairy products and fewer than 1 % of adults consumed 2 portions/d. In contrast, Sri Lankan adults consumed over 14 portions of starch and 3·5 portions of added sugars daily. Almost 70 % of those studied exceeded the upper limit of the recommendations for starch intake. The total daily number of meat and pulse portions was 2·78.

CONCLUSIONS: Dietary guidelines emphasize the importance of a balanced and varied diet; however, a substantial proportion of the Sri Lankan population studied failed to achieve such a recommendation. Nutrition-related diseases in the country may be closely correlated with unhealthy eating habits.


Publication title

Public Health Nutrition










School of Health Sciences


C A B I Publishing

Place of publication

United Kingdom

Repository Status

  • Restricted

Socio-economic Objectives

Other health not elsewhere classified

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