Main Article Content

Taygun Dayi
Gunsu Soykut
Mujgan Ozturk
Sevinc Yucecan


Mediterranean diet, KIDMED, MEDAS, preschool age


The aim of the study was to determine the effect of adherence to the Mediterranean diet of mothers on children’s adherence levels. The study was conducted with 140 mothers and preschool children in North Cyprus, which is a Mediterranean country. Adherence of mother’s to the Mediterranean diet was measured by Mediterranean Diet Adherence Screener (MEDAS) and children’s adherence was determined by the Mediterranean Diet Quality Index (KIDMED). In addition, diet diversity levels of children were evaluated with the Diet Diversity Score (DDS) scale. In mothers; 47.1% were found to have high, 37.2% moderate and 15.7% had low adherence to the Mediterranean diet. 78.6% of children showed high adherence to the Mediterranean diet. 10% of children had a high, 81.4% had moderate and 7.7% had low diet diversity. In addition, it was stated that as adherence to the Mediterranean diet of children increased, diet diversity also significantly increased (p<0.05). 80% of mothers, who were at least university graduates, had children with higher adherence and diet diversity. Moreover, the results showed that, as the adherence of mothers to the Mediterranean diet increases, adherence to the Mediterranean diet and diet diversity scores of children significantly increased (p <0.05). Since the Mediterranean diet is a dietary model in which diet diversity is easily achieved and recommended, it is an effective dietary approach that supports growth and development in childhood, and in the prevention of noncommunicable chronic diseases in adulthood period.


Download data is not yet available.
Abstract 26 | PDF Downloads 8


1. United Nations International Children's Emergency Fund – UNICEF (2004). Children's rights agreement. Accessed: 25.02.2020,
2. Ozcelik S, Kulac I, Yazici M, Ocal E. Distribution of childhood skin diseases according to age and gender, a single institution experience. Turk Pediatri Ars 2017; 53: 105-12.
3. Merkiel-Pawlowska S, Chalcarz W. Gender differences and typical nutrition concerns of the diets of preschool children-the results of the first stage of an intervention study. BMC Pediatr 2017; 17: 1-11.
4. Karoglu H, Unuvar P. Children's development characteristics and social skills level of pre-school children. Mehmet Akif Ersoy University Journal of Education Faculty 2017; 43: 231-54.
5. Eliassen EK. The impact of teachers and families on young children’s eating behaviors. YC 2011; 66: 84-9.
6. Yabanci N, Kisac I, Karakus SS. The effects of mother’s nutritional knowledge on attitudes and behaviors of children about nutrition. J Behav Soc Sci 2014; 116: 4477-81.
7. Davis C, Bryan J, Hodgson J, Murphy K. Definition of the Mediterranean diet: A literature review. Nutrients 2015; 7: 9139-53.
8. Castro-Quezada I, Román-Viňas B, Serra-Majem L. The Mediterranean diet and nutritional adequacy: A review. Nutrients, 2014; 6: 231-48.
9. Tognon G, Antje H, Moreno LA, Pala V. Mediterranean diet, overweight and body composition in children from eight European countries: Cross-sectional and prospective results from the IDEFICS study. Nutr Metab Cardiovasc Dis 2014; 24: 205-13.
10. Martỉnez-González MA, Garcỉa-Arellano A, Toledo E et al. A 14-item Mediterranean diet assessment tool and obesity indexes among high-risk subjects: The PREDIMED trial. PLOS ONE 2012; 7: 1-10.
11. Martỉnez-González MA, Fernández-Jarne E, Serrano-Martỉnez M, Wright M, Gomez-Gracia E. Development of a short dietary intake questionnaire for the quantitative estimation of adherence to a cardioprotective Mediterranean diet. Eur J Clin Nutr 2004; 58: 1550-2.
12. Hernάndez-Galiot A, Goῆi I. Adherence to the Mediterranean diet pattern, cognitive status and depressive symptoms in an elderly non-institutionalized population. Nutr Hosp 2017; 34: 338-44.
13. Serra-Majem LI, Ribas L, Garcỉa A, Pẻrez-Rodrigo C, Aranceta J. Nutrient adequacy and Mediterranean diet in Spanish school children and adolescents. Eur J Clin Nutr 2004; 57: 35-9.
14. Nachvak SM, Abdollahzad H, Mostafai R et al. Dietary Diversity Score and its related factors among employees of Kermanshah University of Medical Sciences. Clin Nutr Res 2017; 6: 247-55.
15. Torheim LE, Outtara F, Diarra MM et al. Nutrient adequacy and dietary diversity in rural Mali: Association and determinants. Eur J Clin Nutr 2004; 58: 594-604.
16. Torrado YP, Velasco AGV, Galiot AH, Cambrodón IG. A strategy for weight loss based on healthy dietary habits and control of emotional response to food. Nutr Hosp 2015; 31: 2392-9.
17. Mahdavi-Roshan M, Salari A, Gholipour M, Naghshbandi M. The diet adherence in cardiovascular disease risk factors patients in the North of Iran based on the Mediterranean diet adherence. IJFET 2017; 11: 497-500.
18. Jurado D, Burgos-Garrido E, Diaz FJ, Martỉnez-Ortega JM, Gurpegui M. Adherence to the Mediterranean dietary pattern and personality in patients attending a primary dealth center. J Acad Nutr Diet 2012; 112: 887-91.
19. Brill JB. The Mediterranean diet and your health. AJML 2009; 3: 44-56.
20. da Silva R, Quintana BR, Bach-Faig A, Buckland G. Worldwide variation of adherence to the Mediterranean diet in 1961-1965 and 2000-2003. Public Health Nutr 2009; 12: 1676-84.
21. Cavaliere A, De Marchi E, Banterle A. Exploring the adherence to the Mediaterranean diet and its relationship with individual lifestyle: The role of healthy behaviors, pro-environmental behaviors, income and education. Nutrients 2018; 10: 1-14.
22. Hamulka J, Wadolowska L, Hoffmann M, Kowalkowska J, Gutkowska K. Effect of an education program on nutrition knowledge, attitudes toward nutrition, diet quality, lifestyle and body composition in Polish teenagers. The ABC of healthy eating project: Design, protocol and methodology. Nutrients 2018; 10: 1-23.
23. Haapala I, Mannikko R, Patja K, Rauramaa R. Age, marital status and changes in dietary habits in later life: A 21-year follow-up among Finnish women. Public Health Nutr 2012; 15: 1174-81.
24. Hanson KL, Sobal J, Frongillo EA. Gender and marital status clarify associations between food insecurity and body weight. J Nutr 2007; 137: 1460-5.
25. Cabrera SG, Fernández NH, Hernández CR, Nissensohn M, Román-Viňas B, Serra-Majem L. KIDMED test; Prevalence of low adherence to the Mediterranean diet in children and young; A systematic review. Nutr Hosp 2015; 32: 2390-9.
26. Kabaran S, Gezer C. Determination of the Mediterranean diet and the obesity status of children and adolescents in Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus. Turk J Pediatr Diseas 2013; 1: 11-20.
27. Erol E, Ersoy G, Pulur A, Ozdemir G, Bektas Y. Evaluation of the Mediterranean Diet Quality Index (KIDMED) in adolescents in Turkey. JHS 2010; 7: 648-64.
28. Mazis I. Turkey, Israel, Greece: Reshuffling in the Eastern Mediterranean. Civitas Gentium 2018; 6: 13-80.
29. Mariscal-Arcas M, Rivas A, Velasco J et al. Evaluation of Mediterranean Diet Quality Index (KIDMED) in children and adolescents in Southern Spain. Public Health Nutr 2008; 12: 1408-12.
30. Steyn NP, Nel JH, Nantel G, Kennedy G, Labadarios D. Food variety and Dietary Diversity Scores in children: Are they good indicators of dietary adequacy? Public Health Nutr 2006; 9: 644-50.
31. Zhao W, Yu K, Tan S et al. Dietary Diversity Scores: An indicators of micronutrient inadequacy instead of obesity for Chinese children. BMC Public Health 2017; 17: 1-11.
32. Ogechi UP, Chilezie OV. Assessment of Dietary Diversity Score, nutritional status and socio-demographic characteristics of under-5 children in Some Rural Areas of Imo State, Nigeria. Malays J Nutr 2017; 23: 425-35.
33. Hooshmand S. Diet diversity and nutritional status of urban primary school children from Iran and India. J Nutr Disorders Ther 2013; 12: 1-5.
34. Akombi BJ, AghoKE, MeromD, Renzaho AM, Hall J. Child malnutrition in sub-Saharan Africa: A meta-analysis of demographic and health surveys (2006-2016). PLOS ONE 2017; 12: 1-11.
35. Al-Shookri A, Al-Shukaily L, Hassan F, Al-Sheraji S, Al-Tobi S. Effects of mothers nutritional knowledge and attitudes on Omani children’s dietary intake. Oman Med J 2011; 26: 253-7.
36. Negash C, Whiting SJ, Henry CJ, Belachew T, Hailemariam TG. Association between maternal and child nutritional status in Hula, Rural Southern Ethiopia: A cross sectional study. PLOS ONE 2015; 10: 1-8.
37. Appoh LY, Krekling S. Maternal nutritional knowledge and child nutritional status in the Volta Region of Ghana. Matern Child Nutr 2005; 1: 100-10.
38. Siponen SM, Ahonen RS, Savolainen PH, Hämeen-Antilla KP. Children’s health and parental socioeconomic factors: A population-based survey in Finland. BMC Public Health 2011; 11: 1-8.
39. Potocka A, Jacukowicz A. Differences in nutritional status of preschool children in the context of the maternal social characteristics. Int J Occup Med Environ Health 2017; 30: 811-21.
40. Savage JS, Fisher JO, Birch LL. Parental influence on eating behavior. J Law Med Ethics 2007; 35: 22-34.