This assessment explains a method developed to assess whether a country’s food supply can support healthy diets at the population level, based on an understanding of what constitutes a diverse diet. Using Cameroon as a test country, the researchers used the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet to designate a healthy diet, which they examined against food availability data from the FAO Food Balance Sheet. The data showed that dairy and animal source foods were not adequately available to meet healthy diet recommendations, while the availability of fruits and vegetables varied. This article argues that the dietary gap assessment illustrates an approach for better understanding how food supply patterns need to change to achieve healthier dietary patterns.
Kuyper, E., Engle-Stone, R., Arsenault, J., Arimond, M., Adams, K., & Dewey, K. (2017). Dietary gap assessment: An approach for evaluating whether a country’s food supply can support healthy diets at the population level. Public Health Nutrition, 20(13), 2277-2288. doi:10.1017/S1368980017001173