Nutritional situation of the elderly in Eastern/Baltic and Central/Western Europe - the AgeingNutrition project

Stephanie Lesser, Lioba Pauly, Dorothee Volkert, Peter Stehle, Ageing Nutrition Group, Guntars Selga (Member of the Working Group), Melita Sauka (Member of the Working Group), Anita Villerusa (Member of the Working Group)

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

16 Citations (Scopus)


BACKGROUND/AIMS: In the AgeingNutrition project, funded by the European Commission, partners from 10 'Eastern/Baltic' (new) European (Bulgaria, Czech Republic, Estonia, Hungary, Latvia, Poland, Romania, Slovak Republic, Slovenia, and Turkey) and 5 'Central/Western' (old) European countries (Austria, Belgium, Germany, Greece, and Spain) performed a comparative analysis of existing data on nutritional status, food intake, nutrient intake, dietary habits and lifestyle of the aging population in Europe.

METHODS: Using predefined inclusion criteria, 36 studies (22 from Eastern/Baltic, 14 from Central/Western countries) were chosen for evaluation. The studies varied in general design, data assessment and parameters and methods applied (especially regarding assessment of nutritional situation, comprising anthropometry, blood lipid profile, dietary nutrient and food intake). Thus, data evaluation by recalculation of raw data had to be restricted to a few distinct, common parameters.

RESULTS AND CONCLUSION: Energy intake is too high in both regions, especially in some of the 'younger old' and seems not to be adjusted to energy expenditure. Simultaneously, energy intake was considerably lower than recommended in some very old seniors in Eastern/Baltic countries. Interestingly, quantity and quality of available information is similar in 'new' and 'old' member states. Immense variations in methodology hampered performing reliable comparative evaluation. It is, thus, mandatory to standardize methods for assessment of nutrition and health status for future international multicenter studies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)62-71
Number of pages10
JournalAnnals of nutrition & metabolism
Issue numberSuppl.1
Publication statusPublished - 2008


  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Body Mass Index
  • Cross-Cultural Comparison
  • Energy Intake/physiology
  • Europe
  • Europe, Eastern
  • Feeding Behavior
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Life Style
  • Lipids/blood
  • Male
  • Meta-Analysis as Topic
  • Middle Aged
  • Nutrition Assessment
  • Nutritional Status

Field of Science*

  • 3.3 Health sciences

Publication Type*

  • 1.1. Scientific article indexed in Web of Science and/or Scopus database


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