P40 What do Japanese Preschoolers with High Vegetable Intake Eat for Dinner?


      Although some Japanese preschoolers eat enough vegetables, many do not adhere to daily vegetable intake guidelines.


      This study explored the association between vegetable consumption and picky eating and examined what Japanese preschoolers eat for dinner to identify ways to increase their vegetable intake.

      Study Design, Setting, and Participants

      Overall, 121 preschoolers aged 4-6 years and their mothers participated in this cross-sectional study. Mothers completed the preschoolers’ dietary records and took pictures of meals for 5 days.

      Measurable Outcome/Analysis

      The average vegetable intake per dinner was calculated. Participants were classified into 3 groups based on quartiles. Socio-demographic characteristics of preschoolers and mothers, preschoolers’ picky eating, and dinner contents were compared among the groups using the chi-square test or Kruskal-Wallis test.


      Data of 118 participants with no defects were analyzed; 24.6% (n = 29) were classified into the high vegetable intake group (>75 g/meal), 50.8% (n = 60) into the medium vegetable intake group (38–75 g/meal), and 24.6% (n = 29) into the low vegetable intake group (<38 g/meal). The high intake group had a lower degree of picky eating (P = 0.03). The number of vegetable dishes, fish or meat dishes with vegetables, and the number of vegetable per dinner in the high intake group were higher. In the high intake group, the median number of vegetable dishes (25, 75th percentiles) was 1.0 (1.0, 1.2) and the median number of vegetables included per dinner was 5 (4.2, 5.8).


      To increase preschoolers’ vegetable intake, it is recommended to include 1 vegetable dish, add vegetables to the fish or meat dishes, and use 5 kinds of vegetables per dinner.
      Funding Japan Society for the Promotion of Science KAKENHI.

      Appendix. Supplementary data