ISSN 2321–3647
Sun, 19 Nov 2017

Nutrition in Transition: Current Dietary Trends around Forest Concessions of the Congo Basin

Pauline Donn1,4 , Tang Erasmus Nchuaji4, Ngondi Judith L4 , Julius Tieguhong1,7, Donald Iponga5 , Obadia Tchingsabe3, Robert Fungo 6, Mathurin Tchatat3, Jean Marie Kahindo2

1. Bioversity International

2. University of Kisangani

3. Institut de Recherche Agricole pour le Développement

4. University of Yaounde1

5. Institut de Recherche en Ecologie Tropicale

6. Makerere University, School of food Technology, Nutrition and Bio-engineering

7. TTRECED-Cameroon, P.O. Box 33297 Yaounde, Cameroon.


The goal of this study was to understand the relationship between timber exploitation and changes in dietary patterns of communities adjoining forest concessions in the Congo Basin.About 724 households were randomly selected from thirty four communities living in six forest concessions of the Congo Basin. Food consumption pattern data was collected using a validated food-frequency questionnaire in 2012. Results showed that food consumption patterns varied across the selected communities: In the Democratic Republic of Congo a typical forest-agricultural dependent dietary pattern was noticed consisting of greater intake of corn, banana, caterpillars, bush meat, groundnuts, cassava leaves, wild fruits and lower consumption of processed food. A mixed pattern was noticed in Cameroon consisting of high consumption of cassava, banana, groundnuts, fresh fruits, wild fruits and low intake of bush meat, frozen meat, green leafy vegetables and fats. A westernized dietary pattern was noticed in Gabon characterized by greater intake of tubers such as cassava, coco yam, yam, banana, cassava leaves, moderate consumption of frozen meat, milk, eggs, tomatoes, and lesser intake of green leafy vegetables and fruits. Processed foods of high lipid content like margarine and butter in addition to protein rich cheese were found in the dietary profile of the Gabonese concessions. As observed in our study, nutrition transition is fastest in the forest concessions of Gabon, slow in those of Cameroon, and slowest in the forest concessions of the DRC.

Keywords:Dietary trends, forest concession, forest dietary profile, nutrition transition, Congo basin.

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