Nutritive Value of Foods of Zimbabwe
Chitsiku, Irene C.
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Many countries, both developed and developing, have tables of the nutrient composition of their food. The data are used by research nutritionists to assess the nutritional value of a nation’s food supply. Home economics teachers and community nutritionists use the food values to develop educational guidance materials for food selection and improvement of diets. Dietitians and physicians use the tables to estimate the nutrient content of therapeutic diets. Government agencies utilize the information to develop regulatory measures such as fortification of processed foods. Food composition tables are an important tool for the interpretation of diets. Every nation has its own food consumption patterns that are peculiar to its culture. Some of these patterns change with time. As countries develop and cultures intermix, new foods and eating habits are adopted. Methods of food production, distribution, storage, preparation, housewifery, and social values change with a change in food habits, but certain food consumption patterns will long be retained. It is these that distinguish one nation’s eating habits from another’s. The table of nutrient composition of foods commonly used in Zimbabwe which is presented here was developed from data reported in various technical and scientific reports and journals.