1 Centro de Investigación en Nutrición y Salud, Instituto Nacional de Salud Pública, México
Background: When designing the collection and analysis of a 24-hr dietary recall an important decision is whether the preparations and dishes reported will be disaggregated or not into ingredients, as food groups could be generated by placing each ingredient of a preparation in a different food group, or by placing the entire preparation in the same food group. Using both types of food grouping systems has the potential to enhance our understanding of dietary habits and culinary culture of the population. Aim and methods: Our aim was to generate ingredient level and preparation level food grouping systems and to identify how each food group from the ingredient level grouping system contributes to the preparation level groups. We used the 24-hr recall data of 3,174 adults from the Mexican Health and Nutrition Survey (ENSANUT) 2012. Results: We found that the majority of fruits (70%) are consumed as plain foods by themselves, 4% accompanying ready-to-eat cereals and about 20% in beverages. For vegetables only ~40% are consumed alone or as the main ingredient. The dish in which the highest proportion of oils and fats is used is corn/tortilla based dishes (26%). Sugar and other sweeteners are mainly used in beverages with 45% used in coffee/tea, 12% in milk beverages and 26% in juices and water based SSB. In the case of milk, 57% is consumed as milk beverage and 28% in coffee/ tea. Conclusion: Our results highlighted key dietary behaviors that could be considered areas of opportunity for promoting a healthier diet. For instance, the habit of consuming vegetables as the main ingredient or as side dishes is not very common; they are mainly added in few amounts to other dishes. Also coffee, as prepared by the Mexican population, is an important source of sugar and milk.