The use of added salt and sugar in the diet of Polish and Austrian toddlers

Daria Masztalerz-Kozubek, Monika A. Zielinska, Petra Rust, Dorota Majchrzak, Jadwiga Hamulka

Children aged <2 years should not be given meals with the addition of salt and sugar due to health risks and to promote healthier dietary habits. The aims of this study were: to assess the prevalence of the use of added salt (AS), sugar (ASu) and both salt and sugar (AS&Su) in the diets of Polish and Austrian toddlers aged 12–24 and 25–36 months; to explore the sociodemographic and early nutritional factors associated with the use of AS and ASu; to investigate the difference in dietary habits and maternal concerns about toddlers’ eating regarding the use of AS and ASu in toddlers’ diet. This cross-sectional anonymous study was conducted in 5893 mothers of children aged 12–36 months, recruited through social media in 2017–2019. The questionnaire consisted of questions about sociodemographics, early feeding practices and current children’s nutrition (e.g., use of AS and ASu, food frequency questionnaire). Multivariate logistic regression and cluster analyses were applied. Austrian mothers more often used AS than mothers from Poland (at 2 years old: 74.8% vs. 52.8%; at 3 years old 87.4% vs. 74.4%, p ≤ 0.001), however Polish mothers were more prone to use ASu (at 2 years old: 34.7% vs. 27.7%; at 3 years old: 59.0% vs. 45.8%, p ≤ 0.001). In younger toddlers (12–24 months), the odds of using of AS, ASu, and AS&Su increased with toddlers’ age, when the mother was a multipara, was not currently breastfeeding, or had exclusively breastfed for 4–5 months. This risk decreased when older toddlers (25–36 months) were introduced to solids by baby-led weaning (BLW). Toddlers from both countries who consumed meals with AS or ASu more often a followed Western-like dietary pattern. Our study emphasizes the need for parental nutritional education when beginning to introduce solid foods.

Department für Ernährungswissenschaften
Externe Organisation(en)
Warsaw University of Life Sciences (SGGW)
International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health
Anzahl der Seiten
ÖFOS 2012
303009 Ernährungswissenschaften
ASJC Scopus Sachgebiete
Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health, Health, Toxicology and Mutagenesis
Sustainable Development Goals
SDG 3 – Gesundheit und Wohlergehen
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