Dietary pattern of the elderly people: a comparison between urban and rural communities

Nurun Nahar Dillruba, Sagarmay Barua

Abstract


This is a cross sectional study conducted amongst 200 randomly selected urban and rural elderly people of age 60 to 90
years. The group of urban sample was selected randomly in Dhaka city. The rural group was randomly selected from
villages of Sonargaon thana under Narayanganj district. The location was selected purposively. The purpose of this
study was to investigate the dietary pattern of the elderly people. Dietary data was collected by a 24-hour recall method
along with a seven days food consimiption frequency. AU urban and rural participants were found to consume rice,
cooking oil and iodized salt every day. More than half (51%) of the urban elderly people were found to take pulse or
legumes 3-6 days per week. On the other hand, half (50%) of the rural elderly people were found to take pulse or
legumes only 1-2 days per week. Majority of the urban (74%) and rural (73%) elderly people were found to take small
fish 1-2 days per week. A good percentage of urban (68%) and rural (62%) elderly people were found to take big fish
1-2 days per week. About 33% of urban and 31% of rural elderly people were found never to take milk in a week.
Twenty nine percent urban and 19% rural elderly people were found to take milk everyday in a week. A higher
proportion of the urban (71%) and rural (69%) elderly people were found to take Green leafy vegetables (GLV) only
1-2 days per week. A higher proportion of the urban (66%) and 56% rural elderly people were found to take citrus
fruits only 1-2 days per week. Rice (p<0.01) and potato (p<0.05) intake was found to be significantly higher for rural
elderly people as compared to their urban counterpart. In contrast wheat, milk and milk product, oil, pulse and nuts
(p<0.01), sugar and meat intake (p<0.05) was found to be significantiy higher for urban elderly people as compared to
their rural counterpart. Energy, protein, fat, iron, thiamine, riboflavin and zinc intake was found to be significantiy
(p<0.01) higher for urban elderly people as compared to the rural one. Carotene intake was found to be in a higher
trend for rural elderly people as compared to their urban counterpart. Energy intake was found to be lower than the
RDA for both urban and rural elderly people. Protein intake was found to be higher than the RDA for urban elderly and
lower than the RDA for rural elderly people. However, the urban elderly people are better off in terms of their energy
and nutrients intake as compared to their rural counterpart.


Keywords


Elderly people, 24-hour dietary recall method. Food frequency. Carbohydrate, Protein, Fat, Rural, Urban

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