Nutrient offerings from the meals and snacks served in four daycare centers in Guatemala City.

M. Vossenaar, B. Panday, V. Hamelinck, M.J. Soto-Méndez, C.M. Doak, N.W. Solomons

Research output: Contribution to JournalArticleAcademicpeer-review


Objective: To assess the nutritional content and contribution to recommended nutrient intakes of the menu offerings in diverse daycare centers serving low-income urban families in Guatemala City. Methods: An observational study design was used to record all food and drink items offered to children attending four daycare centers on 5 different days of the week to represent a typical week (20 d). Direct recording of menus, weighing of ingredients used, and the preparation of dishes and drinks were undertaken. Estimated energy, macronutrients, and eight selected micronutrients were assessed and related to the Food and Agriculture Organization/World Health Organization recommended nutrient intakes. Nutrient densities and critical densities were computed. The diet was also assessed separately by meal time. Top sources of energy and nutrients were identified. Results: The quantity and quality of food items provided at the four daycare centers examined varied greatly. For some nutrients, the recommended nutrient intakes were already accounted for by the food consumed from the institutional fare. As expected, those centers with more meal times covered on their menus had a greater degree of coverage of requirements. Adequacy ratios were above 100% for eight, seven, three, and one of nine nutrients examined for centers A, B, C, and D, respectively. When intakes were compared using nutrient density, all significances were abolished across all nutrients of interest. Conclusion: The present descriptive analysis provides the basis for suggesting reforms at the specific centers and for understanding the generic challenges and opportunities across the system for low-income attendees in Guatemala City. © 2011 Elsevier Inc.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)543-556
Issue number5
Early online date2 Apr 2011
Publication statusPublished - 2011


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