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Impact of COVID-19 Lockdowns on Food Security, Sustainable Food Supply, and Health in Italy: Insights from a Study on Eating Habits and Physical Activity
* 1 , 1 , 2 , 3 , 4
1  Department of Human Sciences and Promotion of the Quality of Life, San Raffaele Roma Open University, 00166 Rome, Italy
2  Division of Cardiology, University of Rome Tor Vergata, 00133 Rome, Italy;
3  Independent Researcher, Via Venezuela 66, 98121 Messina, Italy
4  Department of Internal Medicine II, Center for Complementary Medicine, Freiburg University Hospital, Faculty of Medicine, University of Freiburg, 79106 Freiburg, Germany
Academic Editor: Anet Režek Jambrak


The COVID-19 pandemic has notably influenced eating and lifestyle behaviors, prompting shifts in dietary habits. This study examines lockdown effects on eating patterns and health risks. Lazio, Italy faced multiple lockdown phases, impacting activities and prompting containment. Studies revealed mixed diet changes during short-term lockdowns, yet long-term impacts remain understudied. The study aims to assess lockdown effects on eating habits and health risks through pre-and-post lockdown questionnaires. Data on eating behaviors, food habits, and taste were gathered pre-and-post lockdowns from a Rome obesity center. Ethical standards were followed, and 1256 individuals participated. All participants were contacted between May and July 2021, with the request to repeat the same online test. 118 participants agreed and were included in this study. A structured questionnaire covered meals, food groups, favorite dishes, and activity. Dietary history and body composition assessments were performed. Analysis demonstrated significant shifts in food consumption patterns. Cereals and raw vegetable intake rose, while legume consumption decreased. Drinking habits changed, but alcohol intake remained steady. The study highlighted changes in diet and lifestyle, including reduced eating out and sleep disturbances. Physical activity remained stable, with more morning sports. The study uncovers COVID-19 lockdowns’ impacts on eating habits and health risks, enriching our understanding of prolonged quarantine effects on food supply and security.

Keywords: COVID-19 lockdowns; food security; sustainable food supply; health; Rome; eating habits; physical activity