Food composition tables and database for Bangladesh with special reference to selected ethnic foods


Food is the essential component for human survival. Good health needs a balanced diet. In order to achieve this, the nutrient composition of most frequently consumed foods has to be made well-known and available to the mass population, specially to the researchers. Food Composition Tables (FCTs) provide nutrient composition of foods. It is almost obligatory to know and let others to know what kind of nutrients they receive from the foods that they eat in everyday life. A true FCT is the answer to this basic query. The FCT is indispensable in making assessment for the amount of nutrients contributed by common foods consumed by individual, family and at community levels. The FCT is used in nutrition and public health survey, nutrition education, dietetic and clinical practice, agriculture research, nutritional epidemiology, setting up food standards and establishing food safety regulation and consumer action programs. It is equally promising in making appropriate food choices for the purpose of preparing normal and therapeutic diets. It is, therefore, an important tool for the national planners and policymakers for ensuring food safety and food security for the nation. There is a worldwide call for updating food composition databases. The third world countries are far behind to address this attempt. Likely, Bangladesh does not have Food Composition Database (FCD) or Food Composition Tables (FCT) that can demand to be exclusively of its own. Until now, data on nutrient values have been obtained from food composition tables (FCT)- 'Oeshio Khadder Pustiman' prepared for Bangladesh by the Institute of Nutrition and Food Science, University of Dhaka (1977), later edited in English version-Tables of Nutrient Composition of Bangladeshi Foods' by Helen Keller International (HKI) (1988). Most of the nutrient data in these FCTs were analyzed long back with much of the data borrowed from neighboring countries and exotic sources. Moreover, the nutrient composition of ethnic foods is not available in the Bangladesh food composition tables. Recently there has been a radical change in our food chain, primarily because of the emergence of new high yielding varieties of foods belonging to both plant and animal origins. The changes in environment and soil conditions may have induced changes in nutrient contents of foods that are grown on the soil. With the increasing concern of the relationships between diet, food habits and degenerative lifestyle diseases, there is increased interest in food composition database. Therefore, nutritive values of these local food items need to be incorporated in the food composition tables. In line of our continued challenge to "Preparation of food composition database for Bangladesh with special reference to indigenous and ethnic foods", this new- 'Food Composition Tables and Database for Bangladesh with Special Reference to Selected Ethnic Foods' is a robust attempt to cater for the existing nutrients data gap. This Food Composition Tables comprises a wide range of nutrient data of 481 food items of most representative food groups that are consumed by mass people of Bangladesh. Its special characteristic rests on incorporation of the nutrient data of ethnic foods. This FCTs and FCDB contain newly analyzed nutrient data of 93 raw food items comprising 53 indigenous and 40 ethnic key foods. The nutrient data of rest 388 food items were taken from HKI table, published and unpublished sources of local foods; and some nutrient values were also taken from published sources of Asian origin. It is to be noted that a Comprehensive Food Consumption Survey (CFCS) and a number of Focus Group Discussions (FGDs) were conducted among the indigenous and ethnic population in selection and identification of key food items for analysis of nutrient values and for inclusion into the FCTs.

Date and language
Jun 2012
Personal Author
Agris Subject Categories: 
Human nutrition - General aspects
Agris Subject Categories: 
Physiology of human nutrition
Agris Subject Categories: 
Nutrition programmes
Physical Location: 
FPMU Documentation Center
Other information
Printed resource

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