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Year : 2021  |  Volume : 26  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 116

Did Iranians change their eating behavior following COVID-19 outbreak?

1 Nutrition Research Center, School of Nutrition and Food Sciences, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran
2 Nutrition Research Center, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Shiraz, Iran
3 Division of Medical Education, Brighton and Sussex Medical School, Brighton, England, UK

Correspondence Address:
Ms. Malihe Karamizadeh
School of Nutrition and Food Science, Shiraz University of Medical Sciences, Razi Blvd, Shiraz
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/jrms.JRMS_1234_20

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Background: Significant lifestyle changes have been reported after COVID-19 outbreak. The present study aimed at investigating changes in dietary habits in response to the COVID-19 outbreak in an Iranian population sample. Materials and Methods: In this cross-sectional study, the dietary habits of Iranian adults were assessed before and during the COVID-19 outbreak. Consumption of different food groups such as meats, dairy, fruits, vegetables, seeds, and nuts was assessed using a digital questionnaire which was shared on social media platforms. For the statistical analysis, the Wilcoxon signed-rank test was used. Results: In this online survey, 1553 questionnaires were completed. The results showed that the reported consumption of protein-rich foods increased (P < 0.05), but fish and dairy consumption showed a significant reduction (P = 0.006 and <0.001, respectively). There was a significant reduction in reported fast-food consumption (P < 0.001). Fruits and vegetables (P < 0.001), natural fruit juices (P < 0.001), and water (P < 0.001) were consumed more frequently. Individuals also consumed more vitamin and mineral supplements (P < 0.001) including those containing Vitamin D. Conclusion: During the COVID-19 pandemic, participants reported a significant change in their dietary habits and intake of supplements. Higher intakes of meats, protein-rich foods, fruits, vegetables, and nutritional supplements and lower intakes of fish, dairy, and fast foods were reported.

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