RESEARCH PAPER
Westernization of dietary patterns among young Japanese and Polish females – a comparison study
 
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1
Graduate School of Human Life Science, Osaka City University, Japan
2
Department of Human Nutrition and Hygiene, Poznan University of Life Sciences, Poznan, Poland
 
Ann Agric Environ Med. 2013;20(1):122–130
 
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ABSTRACT
Introduction and objective. Nowadays, the process of the westernization of eating habits is perceived to be one of the main causes of epidemics of civilization diseases, such as metabolic syndrome. The aim of the study was to assess the westernization of eating habits among 100 Japanese (aged 18-23 years) and 111 Polish female students (aged 19-25 years) of nutrition science related faculties. Materials and methods. Food-frequency questionnaires were used to assess a dietary pattern during the four seasons of a one-year investigation. Data obtained in each season was pooled. The frequency of consumption of different foods (servings/week) between the two countries was compared and characterization of the dietary patterns of both studied populations was analyzed by factor analysis. Results. When food consumption between the two countries was compared, apart from total meat and meat products and high-energy drink intake, significant differences were observed in all foods and food groups. Three dietary patterns were identified in both groups. Among Japanese participants, the first pattern was ‘traditional Japanese’, the second ‘sweets and beverages’, and the third ‘Western’, explaining 9.0%, 8.5% and 6.4% of the total variance, respectively. Among Polish participants, the first pattern was ‘prudent’, the second ‘Western’, and the third ‘sweets and alcoholic beverages’, explaining 8.2%, 7.7%, 6.4% of the total variance, respectively. Although the ‘Western’ dietary pattern was found in both groups, there were some differences in the remaining dietary patterns between the two countries. Conclusions. In the Japanese participants, significant cultural influences on habitual food intake could still be observed, and the extent of diet westernization seems to be smaller compared to the Polish participants.
 
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