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Wild vegetables and micronutrient nutrition: Studies on the significance of wild vegetables in women's diets in Vietnam
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Medical Sciences.
2001 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

The principal aim has been to investigate the contemporary role and importance of edible wild plants in the diets of women in different agro-ecological regions of Vietnam. Field studies were undertaken in four villages in the Mekong Delta (MD) and the Central Highlands (CH) in 1995-1999. Data collection included rapid appraisal techniques, botanical identification, dietary assessments (7-day food frequency recall), anthropometry, blood sampling (haemoglobin, serum ferritin, serum retinol and C-reactive protein) and analysis of vegetable samples (dry matter, selected minerals and vitamins, tannins and phytic acid). A food variety analysis was used to test the adequacy of diets.

The uses of over 90 wild plant species were documented, many with multiple functions as foods, medicines and livestock feeds. In the dietary assessment 29 species were reported. Most women used a combination of home produced, commercial and wild vegetables. A high 72 and 43% respectively of the vegetables consumed in the MD and CH sites were gathered (rainy season). They contributed significantly to micronutrient intakes, especially vitamin A, calcium, vitamin C and folate. They added considerably to food diversity and women with the most diverse diets had relatively adequate nutrient intakes. The species used and importance of wild plants varied considerably with region, season and ethnicity.

The main conclusions are that edible wild plants continue to make important contributions to the nutrient intakes of women. If this is neglected in diet assessments our understanding of the overall dietary adequacy may be misinterpreted and much valuable knowledge of traditional food diversification may be lost. A food variety analysis can be a useful tool in identifying groups with inadequate diets. The dual role of many species as dietary components and in preventive health care deserves greater attention.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis , 2001. , p. 59
Series
Comprehensive Summaries of Uppsala Dissertations from the Faculty of Medicine, ISSN 0282-7476 ; 1056
Keywords [en]
Medical sciences, Edible wild plants, gathered vegetables, Vietnam, micronutrients, rapid appraisal, dietary assessment, nutrition status, chemical analysis, food diversity, folate, medicinal foods
Keywords [sv]
MEDICIN OCH VÅRD
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Research subject
Nutrition
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-694ISBN: 91-554-5068-7 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-694DiVA, id: diva2:168542
Public defence
2001-05-29, Hörsalen, Dag Hammarskjölds väg 17, Uppsala, 09:00 (English)
Available from: 2001-05-08 Created: 2001-05-08 Last updated: 2009-08-26Bibliographically approved

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Citation style
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