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    The COVID-19 pandemic is known to influence the dietary habits of adults, but results for adolescents in studies are ambiguous. The present work aimed to analyze the differences in the scores of the Adolescents' Food Habits Checklist (AFHC) before and during the pandemic in the Polish Adolescents' COVID-19 Experience (PLACE-19) Study population. The PLACE-19 Study was conducted during the pandemic among a population of 2448 students recruited from secondary schools in all regions of Poland using a random quota sampling. The participants were required to complete an AFHC consisting of 23 items pertaining to food purchase, preparation, and consumption habits. Current habits (during the pandemic) and previous habits were assessed and scored separately. The total (p = 0.001), purchase (p < 0.001), and consumption scores (p = 0.014) indicated that the AFHC scores during the pandemic were higher than before. For questions on purchase habits, a lower number of respondents reported eating in a restaurant, eating takeaway meals, having lunch away from home, or buying pastries, cakes or crisps. For questions on preparation habits, an greater number of respondents reported that they usually avoided eating fried food and tried to keep their overall sugar intake down, but fewer respondents said they tried to have low-fat desserts. For questions on consumption habits, a lower number of respondents reported that they usually ate a dessert or pudding if one were available and a larger number said they made sure to eat at least one serving of vegetables or salad a day and at least three servings of fruit most days. Based on the obtained results, it may be stated that although there was an increase in the AFHC scores during the pandemic, a similar share of respondents showed improved or worsened food habits, and a similar share changed their food habits from healthy to unhealthy and from unhealthy to healthy. At the same time, a majority of changes were associated with purchase habits, which were probably forced by lockdowns and the resultant restrictions in eating out or grocery shopping.


    Dominika Skolmowska, Dominika Głąbska, Dominika Guzek. Differences in Adolescents' Food Habits Checklist (AFHC) Scores before and during Pandemic in a Population-Based Sample: Polish Adolescents' COVID-19 Experience (PLACE-19) Study. Nutrients. 2021 May 14;13(5)

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    PMID: 34068876

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