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How can I find out more about what Polish people eat?
January 22, 2013 9:31 AM   Subscribe

Can you think of any good sources of information on Polish daily eating habits, dietary trends, frequently used ingredients and dishes etc.? Bonus question: how much overlap is there with other Eastern European countries?

My current employer - a Dutch hospital - is looking for ways to give better, culturally acceptable dietary advice to our Polish patients.

Basically we need to learn what, how and when the Poles eat (and don't eat) so that we don't just blindly push Dutch recommendations, or fail to recognize potential problems. The daily work is often hampered by a language barrier, hence my quest for background info.

Articles etc. in Polish are also welcome, as online translations seem to turn out legible enough.

Extra point for any specifically diabetes related information (e.g. what would a Polish dietician recommend to patients with diabetes, or advice them to avoid).

TIA
posted by sively to Food & Drink (6 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
 


It sounds like the kind of information you're looking for is generally collected by governmental public-health research organizations. So I think you should start your search by finding relevant governmental research organizations.

The Polish Ministry of Health comprises several research institutes that may be useful to you.

One of them is the Food and Nutrition Institute. Their web page seems to contain lots of the kind of information you're looking for on dietary trends, and may be a good starting point for finding research. Another is the Institute of Public Health, which may have more diabetes-specific research.

You may also want to look at European Union public health research, since both Poland and the Netherlands are EU member states. Here's the European Commission's General Directorate on Public Health web page.
posted by snowmentality at 10:22 AM on January 22, 2013


Polish Diabetes Association.

This is the other site Wikipedia references. It looks like a central information portal aimed at Polish doctors. It has a page on diet.

My guess is that if you were to contact the Polish Diabetes Association, they could point you int he right direction.
posted by hoyland at 10:23 AM on January 22, 2013


Maybe a wacky idea, but perhaps log on Chatroulette, filter your settings so you only speak to people from Poland, and ask them? This would definitely give you the common man's perspective, and most CR uses speak English, from what I could tell. On the other hand, as far as healthy meals, nutrition, etc., this may not be so helpful.
posted by srrh at 10:46 AM on January 22, 2013


Oh you guys are just excellent!

This would definitely give you the common man's perspective, and most CR uses speak English, from what I could tell. On the other hand, as far as healthy meals, nutrition, etc., this may not be so helpful.

Actually that kind of information would be tremendously useful, too. My colleagues have often found it difficult to assess just what regular people normally eat and told me many Poles just sort of of shrug and say "you know, a normal meal". So, it took us by surprise to e.g. realize how rich and filling the starter soups often are, and that there's often a considerable starchy component in them - they had assumed it would be the thin broth kind of soup the Dutch may begin their dinner with. (For carb-counting diabetics it makes a huge difference.)
posted by sively at 12:02 PM on January 22, 2013 [1 favorite]


how much overlap is there with other Eastern European countries

There is a lot of similarity between the cuisine of Poland and Ukraine, Czechy & Slovakia - Hungary, not so much.
posted by HiroProtagonist at 5:17 PM on January 22, 2013


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