The aim of this study was to evaluate the taste preferences and acceptation of chosen groups of food products in pre-school children with underweight, proper weight, overweight and obesity in relation to parents’ opinion in these matters.
Methods We examined 250 children and their parents from four randomly chosen kindergartens in Krakow. Children taste preferences were estimated with using special Questionnaire by matching of child’s face with different degree of satisfaction to 35 products from 5 groups: sweets, dairy, vegetables, fruit and fast-food. Five ranks were created: 1-like, 2-don’t like, 3-neutral, 4-never eaten, 5-never eaten from doctor’s indication. The weight-height proportions were evaluated with using centile distribution of BMI index.
Results Underweight was stated in 26 children (10.4%), proper weight in 208 children (83.2%), overweight and obesity in 16 children (6.4%). Underweight children preferred sweets (rank 1.46+0.86), next: fast food (1.48+0.9), dairy (1.58+1.04), vegetables (1.70+0.82) and fruit (1.70+1.01). Opposite to them overweight children chose fruit (1.28+0.74) statistically more often (Kruskal-Wallis test, p<0.05) but vegetables were chosen the most rarely (1.75+0.99); fast-food were on the second position (1.29+0.58), next- sweets (1.33+0.77) and dairy (1.43+0.97). Children with proper weight chose sweets the most frequently (1.24+0.64) and vegetables were chosen the most rarely (1.52+0.77).
Conclusions Underweight was stated more frequently than overweight and obesity. The parents of all children declared limitation of sweets consumption but simultaneously sweets were notified as frequent snack, particularly in underweight children. The special educational program for children and their parents containing information about proper nutrition was implemented