Nutritional contribution of street foods to the diet of people in developing countries: a systematic review

SOURCE: Public Health Nutrition
OUTPUT TYPE: Journal Article
PUBLICATION YEAR: 2013
TITLE AUTHOR(S): N.P.Steyn, Z.Mchiza, J.Hill, Y.D.Davids, I.Venter, E.Hinrichsen, M.Opperman, J.Rumbelow, P.Jacobs
KEYWORDS: FOOD SECURITY, HEALTH, NUTRITION
DEPARTMENT: Economic Perfomance and Development (EPD)
Print: HSRC Library: shelf number 7819

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Abstract

Objective: To review studies examining the nutritional value of street foods and their contribution to the diet of consumers in developing countries. Design: The electronic databases PubMed/MEDLINE, Web of Science, Cochrane Library, Proquest Health and Science Direct were searched for articles on street foods in developing countries that included findings on nutritional value. Results: From a total of 639 articles, twenty-three studies were retained since they met the inclusion criteria. In summary, daily energy intake from street foods in adults ranged from 13% to 50% of energy and in children from 13% to 40% of energy. Although the amounts differed from place to place, even at the lowest values of the percentage of energy intake range, energy from street foods made a significant contribution to the diet. Furthermore, the majority of studies suggest that street foods contributed significantly to the daily intake of protein, often at 50% of the RDA. The data on fat and carbohydrate intakes are of some concern because of the assumed high contribution of street foods to the total intakes of fat, trans-fat, salt and sugar in numerous studies and their possible role in the development of obesity and non-communicable diseases. Few studies have provided data on the intake of icronutrients, but these tended to be high for Fe and vitamin A while low for Ca and thiamin. Conclusions: Street foods make a significant contribution to energy and protein intakes of people in developing countries and their use should be encouraged if they are healthy traditional foods.