Fruit consumption among young people aged 10 to 24 in Burundi: A descriptive cross-sectional survey (2019)

L. Ntakarutimana, M. Merckling, A. Labat

12th European congress on tropical medicine and international health, 28 sept- 1 oct 2021, Virtual from Bergen, Norway


Fruit consumption is very important because they are rich in vitamins, minerals and antioxidants and are valuable allies in reducing the risk of cancer, obesity and cardiovascular disease. This study assesses eating behaviors and associated factors in 1,964 young people aged 10 to 24 in Burundi.


This is a four-stage cross-sectional cluster survey carried out in 11 of Burundi’s 18 provinces, where 110 enumeration areas were randomly selected. The data were collected using a questionnaire on the ODK platform and the results analyzed using Stata 15.0.


25.3% of respondents say they rarely (less than once a week) consume fruit; girls being more concerned (27.0%) than boys (22.9%). A decreasing gradient is observed across the age groups; young adolescents (10-14 years) and adolescents (15-19 years) being relatively more affected (25.4% and 23.7% respectively) than young adults (20-24 years) of which only 18.4% rarely consume fruits. In addition, frequency of fruit consumption appears to be linked to nutritional status as 39.2% of all overweight and obese young people (2.6% of respondents) rarely consume fruits compared to only 24% in young people of normal weight.


One in four young people rarely consume fruits with a gender dimension. Could the fact that the youngest are the most affected be related to their low autonomy in the choice of diet? Further investigations are needed to better understand this phenomenon. Our results are consistent with the idea that increasing the frequency of fruit consumption helps improve nutritional status in young people. Therefore, it would be interesting to identify in young Burundians the barriers to fruit consumption despite their relatively good physical availability throughout the country.