Eating from a shared plate affects food consumption in vitamin A - Deficient Nepali children

A. V. Shankar, J. Gittelsohn, K. P. West, R. Stallings, T. Gnywali, F. Faruque

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

17 Scopus citations


This case-control study evaluates the relationship between shared-plate eating behavior in young Nepali children (aged 1-6 y) and risk of vitamin A deficiency. Day-long observations of dietary practices were conducted on 7 d over a 15-mo period in 162 households: 81 households with a child with a known history of mild xerophthalmia (cases) were matched with 81 having a non-xerophthalmic child of similar age (controls). Shared-plate eating occurred in 25% of all feeding episodes and at least once in 65% of all days observed. Overall, children engaging in shared-plate eating were significantly more likely to consume grains, vegetables, carotenoid-rich vegetables, pulses, fruits, meats and fish, and dairy products and had significantly larger portion sizes for grains, vegetables, fruits, pulses and dairy products, compared with children who ate alone. In general, feeding behaviors between case and control children tended to be similar. However, shared-plate feeding episodes among case children were significantly less likely to include meats or fish [odds ratio (OR) = 0.5, confidence interval (CI) = 0.3-0.8], dairy products (OR = 0.6, CI = 0.4-0.9) or pulses (OR = 0.7, CI = 0.5-1.0). Individual-plate feeding episodes among case children were more likely to include vegetables (OR = 1.3, CI = 1.0-1.6) than those of control children. Case children were more likely to share a plate with a male adult (OR = 1.7, CI = 1.0-2.8), but less likely to eat from a plate shared with females of any age compared with controls (female adult: OR = 0.6, CI = 0.4-0.9; female child: OR = 0.6, CI = 0.4-1.0). Shared-plate eating may benefit a young child's dietary intake, but the identity of the food sharer may modify this influence.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1127-1133
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of Nutrition
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 1998


  • Children
  • Food sharing
  • Nepal
  • Shared-plate eating
  • Vitamin A deficiency

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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