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Survey: 12.1% of Venezuelans ate less and worse in 2015

Out of 1,488 interviewees, 12.1% claimed to have eaten only two or fewer meals from the three daily meals 

A significant number of Venezuelans replace lunch with food products they usually have for breakfast (Venancio Alcázares)

VENANCIO ALCÁZARES

  • DAYANA VÁSQUEZ VÁSQUEZ

21 de mayo de 2016 00:29 AM

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Survey: 12.1% of Venezuelans ate less and worse in 2015

In 2015, a survey on life conditions (Encovi), conducted by the Venezuelan Health Watch (OVS), NGO Bengoa Foundation, and the Center for Development Research of the Central University of Venezuela (Cendes-UCV), found that Venezuelans last year ate less and worse. Out of 1,488 respondents, 12.1% said that out of the three daily meals they ate only two or fewer, for 87% of Venezuelans lack enough money to meet their needs.

According to the poll, shortage has compelled families to change their eating habits.

In this regard, Nixa Martínez, the head of the Venezuelan Nutritionists and Dieticians Professional Association says: “Venezuelans’ diet has dramatically changed in recent years. This year has witnessed more scarcity than ever. People have chosen to replace a full meal with snacks. We have found mothers who give sleeping pills to their children to extend the period before mealtime.

Similarly, the expert suggests that food providing necessary nutrients for the body (proteins, carbohydrates and fats) are temporarily replaced with vegetables, fruits, cereals, and yoghurt, provided that people eat them more than once a day.

Amidst the food crisis, survival diets or monotonous diets, which is the way food experts call them, have turned into the daily menu of nationals. Corn flour, rice, spaghetti, and fats top the list of foodstuffs in short supply and they are replaced with vegetables, fruits and cereals because this is what people find in supermarkets.

For their part, nutritionists from Bengoa Foundation pointed out that this situation has increased a sedentary lifestyle in people, for they have adopted poor eating habits and the time available for exercises is spent in lines to buy food products.  

Martínez in this connection has called for government authorities to lift production and guarantee the right to food.

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