Too many saturated fats and sugars, low fiber and potassium: the errors in our diet, according to EFSA experts

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Carlos Laforet Coll
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Which nutrients do EU citizens get the most and how could they change their diet for the better? To answer these questions comes a new EFSA report that has dealt with providing very important food advice for public health

Don't store avocado like this: it's dangerous

The European food safety authority (EFSA) has published a new report on the nutrients present in the foods we consume every day. Some are too present, others lacking in the diet of Europeans.





The report stems from the European Commission's request to identify the most important nutrients for public health, also in view of the creation of new labels and with the aim of guiding national choices on nutritional recommendations.

As EFSA writes, among other things:

As part of the Farm to Fork strategy, the European Commission intends to propose a review of existing legislation on the provision of food information to consumers by the end of 2022.

Therefore, the report could prove to be really fundamental to provide new, even more specific indications regarding nutrients and the prevention of many chronic diseases through proper nutrition.

I risultati of the report sui nutrienti

What emerges from the results actually reflects trends that those who are experts or passionate about nutrition already know.

First of all it emerges that theIntake of saturated fat, sodium, and added / free sugars exceeds dietary recommendations in most European populations. This excess intake, as is now known and proven by several studies, is associated with many health problems. As a result, cutting down on unhealthy nutrients helps prevent various diseases, including cardiovascular ones.

Also, we eat too much, that is we generally consume too many calories and, as EFSA reminds us:

Considering the high prevalence of overweight and obesity in Europe, a decrease in energy intake is important for the public health of European populations.

Too much fat, sugar and calories for one low intake of fiber and potassium in the diet.

And not only the excess of unhealthy nutrients but also the lack of what our body needs can have harmful effects on health.


As for iron, calcium, vitamin D, folate and iodine, the intake is inadequate only for specific subpopulations.


What should we eat most often

EFSA experts also explain which foods we should bring to the table more often, as they are highly recommended for the nutrients they contain.

It is about:

  • Whole grains
  • fruits and vegetables
  • nuts and seeds
  • low-fat milk and dairy products
  • fish
  • legumes, which partially replace meat (especially red meat and processed meats)
  • vegetable oils rich in monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fats (for example olive, sunflower, corn and rapeseed oil) in place of fats that contain a lot of saturated fats (such as palm and coconut oils, butter and other animal fats).

And of course it is also recommended to drink a lot of water.

Here you will find the complete EFSA report.

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Source: Efsa

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