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Dietary Intake Issues in Australia Report

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Updated: May 2nd, 2022

The day’s diets have a very large deviation from the recommended Australian dietary standards. The dietary guidelines assist people to make healthy choices regarding the food they eat. The main aim of the guidelines is to ensure that the general population takes a diet that promotes a healthy lifestyle and which can minimize the risks of developing diet-related disorders (Ahrens, and Pigeot 1032).

Comparison of the Day’s Diet to the Recommended Standards

Most of the day’s diets do not conform to the standards recommended by the Australian government. The energy and the total calories are far much less than the recommended standards for the two nutrients. The RDI value for the energy and the total calories are 13,064.50 kJ and 3,121.10 kcal respectively. On the other hand, the day’s intakes are 7,136.50 kJ and 1,705.60 kcal in that order. However, the daily protein intake surpasses the recommended standard which is the utmost 39 percent. On the other hand, these people consume larger amounts of protein than what is fit for their bodies.

Like the daily protein and energy intakes, the day’s vitamin intakes also exhibit the same trend when compared to the recommended standards. Some of the basic minerals are taken in less quantity while others are taken in larger quantities than the RDIs. People take calcium, potassium, magnesium, and zinc in lower quantities than the RDI. Potassium is the least taken and the intake is about 52 percent less than the RDI.

The day’s intake of phosphorous, sodium, and iron exceed the RDI amounts by 16, 19, and 51 percent respectively. It appears that people do not understand or have assumed the importance of the correct amounts of mineral intake. The correct amounts of minerals assist the human body to accomplish its major functions, which include repair and maintenance of bones and tissues, oxygen transportation within the body, growth stimulation and the normalizing of the nervous system (National Health & Medical Research Council 87).

The day’s intake of the vitamins also suffers the same problems as that for energy, protein, and minerals. The five most important vitamins, which include thiamine, riboflavin, vitamin C, Niacin, Retinol, have a big variation when compared to the recommended values. The table for the vitamins’ intake reveals that the intakes for thiamine and retinol are less than the RDI values, while the intakes of Riboflavin, Vitamin C, Niacin, and retinol surpass the RDI amounts.

Other nutrients such as fiber and water are also not taken according to the recommended amounts. The water intake, in particular, is extremely lower than the RDI value. This indicates that the majority of people rarely take a sufficient amount of water as required. Water is quite essential to the functioning of the human body and without it, the body may begin to experience a number of malfunctions. The fiber daily intake also needs to be stepped up. The consumption of food rich in fiber is less than the recommended standards.

The records of the three-day intake are even worse when compared to the required standards. None of the energy-giving food recorded in the three days has met the required standards. Proteins, polyunsat fat, and saturated fat fall below half of the required standards. They are all below 50% of the RDIs. Only carbohydrates surpassed fifty percent of the RDI.

The three days intake for minerals is no exception. Very few people are aware of the importance of minerals in their diet. As a result, they usually do not or incorporate very low quantities of minerals in their diets. In the three days intake, only sodium was close to the recommended standards. Other minerals such as zinc, magnesium, iron, calcium, phosphorous, and potassium are taken in small quantities that do not even attain 50% of the required standards. Magnesium and potassium are the minerals taken in the smallest quantities.

In the three days intake, vitamins were taken in considerably good amounts. Even though the quantities are still less than the RDIs, they are not as bad as other foods served in the three days. Riboflavin, vitamin C, and Niacin attained 65, 71, and 74 percent, which is not that bad. However, the intakes of thiamine and retinol still need to be stepped up since they are so low.

The records of water and fiber intake in the three days are no different from the other recording procedure. The amounts of the two nutrients taken in three days are less than half of the recommended quantities. The amount of water taken is 24% and the amount of fiber is 15%. These amounts are not enough and as a result, the two nutrients cannot effectively help in the body functions they are meant to perform.

Comparison of the Two Recording Methods to the Core Food groups (1994)

The comparison of the 3 days’ recording method to the core food groups (1994) has given mixed results. The amount of cereal served in the three days is 464.34g, which is more than the recommended amount of 270g. Unlike the cereals, vegetables were not served at all. Fruits that were served during the three days almost equaled the recommended amount; the served amount was less than the recommended one by about 41.33g.

Other core foods such as milk and meat, also fall under the same fate as the cereals. In the three days dish up, 259g of milk was served, which is less than the recommended amount of 500g. Only meat was served in excess during the three days recorded. The amount of meat surpassed the recommended amount by close to 89g. The amounts of fruits served, on the other hand, almost equalized the recommended amount.

The results of the three-day recording are almost similar to those of the 24-hours recording. Cereals, for instance, were served in excess of about 180g than the recommended amount of 270g. The case of vegetables is more serious. Only 61g of vegetables were served, while the amount recommended is 450g. In the 24-hour recording, 428g of fruit, 95g of milk and 209 of meat were served against their respective amounts of 450g, 500g, and 120g.

Importance of Core Food Group Concept as Nutritional Adequacy Indicator

The concept of the core food groups is a good indicator of nutritional adequacy. It is a very flexible approach, which allows for the substitution of the common foods into the diets of special groups of people or special cultures. It uses a weighting method that can accommodate various profiles of different groups.

Even though most of the ethnic and special diets appear to have similar basic food groups, the types of food in the basic groups may be different from one another. As a result, nutritionists can use the concept of core food groups to advise people on the way they need to choose their foods (Cashel, and Jefferson 63).

The concept of the core food groups also allows for the incorporation of mixed and processed foods into the recommended diets. The processed foods can easily be added into the core groups to constitute the components of the groups. The concept, therefore, allows for maximum flexibility when it comes to making choices of diets components. It is the most appropriate approach for the choices of foods for people who require special diets (Spilsbury 106).

The concept has assisted most people in ensuring that they add the basic food components into their diets. Even though the concept has not outlined the issues of the extra foods that are required in a balanced diet, it has laid much emphasis on the importance of the basic foods. The core foods contain some of the extra dietary components such as sugars and fats. However, the components should be incorporated into the diets to complement the amounts taken in the core foods (Cashel and Jefferson 68).

Correlation of the Two Recording Methods

There is not much difference between the 24-hour dietary intake and the three days intake recording criteria. The results obtained from the two recording methods have a number of similarities. For instance, in the case of energy-giving foods such as fats, proteins, and carbohydrates, both methods show that none of those foods has attained the required standards. In fact, in both cases, the amounts of these foods are less than the RDIs.

However, there is a big variation in the case of the minerals. The 24-hour recording method shows that some of the minerals are taken in larger quantities than the recommended ones; these minerals include phosphorous, iron, and sodium. The amounts of other minerals in the 24-hour recording method fall below the RDIs. On the other hand, none of the minerals in the three days recording method has surpassed or equaled the amount in the RDIs. The same differences can also be seen in the case of vitamins.

The three days recording method is better than the 24-hour method. The results in the three day recording method give the averages of the quantities taken in three days. When the averages of quantities of food taken in more than one day are determined, they help minimize the occurrence of errors. The three days recording method is a better indicator since the averages reflect the dietary behavior for more than one day.

Importance of Modifying Diets

Diet modification is one of the most effective ways of improving someone’s health. It helps reduce the risks of contracting diet-related disorders, some which normally can lead to death. The modification, through the methods that conform to the recommended dietary guidelines, can help one to prevent such conditions and illnesses that come as a result of taking an imbalanced diet (Shills 1086).

The modification implies changing the eating styles based on the principles of good nutrition, which is in line with the recommended standards and guidelines. The modification can help one to develop a diet that is within his financial needs while on the hand, taking foods that are rich in most of the required nutrients. It also assists in the incorporation of foods that are fresher and that have low fat quantities (Spilsbury 109).

Lastly, the modification will enable one to develop a diet that does not only look into the quantity and quality, but also the healthiness of the foods taken. It is the only way through which one can ensure that he takes foods that are nutritious and are able to provide enough energy and other nutrients to him or her (Shills 1089).

Works Cited

Ahrens, Wolfgang, and Iris Pigeot. Handbook of Epidemiology: With 165 Figures and 180Tables. New York, NY: Springer, 2007. Print.

Cashel, Karen, and Sue Jefferson. The core food groups: The scientific basis for developing nutrition education tools. Canberra: NHMRC, 1994. Print.

National Health & Medical Research Council (NHMRC). Nutrient Reference Values for Australia and New Zealand, including Recommended Dietary intakes. Canberra: AGPS, 2006. Print.

Shills, Maurice Edward. Modern Nutrition in Health and Diseases. Philadelphia, PA: Lippincott Williams & Wilkins, 2005. Print.

Spilsbury, Louise. A Balanced Diet. Chicago, IL: Heinemann Library, 2009. Print.

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