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Revista de la Facultad de Medicina

Print version ISSN 0120-0011


BECERRA-BULLA, Fabiola; PINZON-VILLATE, Gloria  and  VARGAS-ZARATE, Melier. Medical students nutritional status and food consumption, in UNAL-Bogotá 2010-2011. [online]. 2012, vol.60, suppl.1, pp.3-12. ISSN 0120-0011.

Background. Some studies have been carried out in the Universidad Nacional de Colombia (UNALCO) Bogotá aimed at ascertaining the nutritional status and food consumption pattern of students from UNALCO's different faculties. They have reported a prevalence of malnutrition and deficient consumption of macro- and micro-nutrients due to inadequate eating habits. Objective. Determining undergraduate (first semester) medical students' nutritional status and some characteristics regarding their food consumption. Materials and methods. A cross-sectional study was made of UNALCO undergraduate medical students in Bogotá who had been admitted during the second semester 2010 and first semester 2011. The following anthropometric measurements were made: weight, height and waist circumference. An instrument was also used to collect data, including socioeconomic variables, meal times and the frequency of consuming certain types of food. Results. 199 students were surveyed; 71.9% were male and 28.1% female. 75% of the students were classified as being normal, the rest (25%) as suffering from malnutrition (excess weight being greater than deficit). Malnutrition was slightly more prevalent in males than females. Not all the students ate at the recommended eating times and the frequency of consuming all the groups of food considered was deficient. A high frequency of consuming fast food, carbonated beverages and fat being added to food was observed. Conclusion. The students' inadequate eating habits found in this study were related to their nutritional status.

Keywords : nutritional status; students; medical; malnutrition; macronutrients; micronutrients; food habits.

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