Background: The Covid-19 pandemic led to lockdowns in several parts of the world, causing sudden lifestyle and dietary habits changed, through social distancing and isolation at home. This study aimed to compare the general dietary habits and lifestyle between before and during COVID-19 among the Saudi adult population in Riyadh.
Methods: It was a cross-sectional study, targeting the Riyadh population, from 16 May 2020 to 16 June 2020. The study comprised a structured questionnaire packet that inquired demographic information examples include:(age, gender, place of residence, and health status); dietary habits information (daily intake of certain foods, food frequency, number of meals/day, and number of times drinking the tea and coffee); lifestyle habits information (physical activity, sleep quality, time that spend using the internet, social media and electronic devices for fun daily and stresses) using Google form. A total of 1,193 participants have been included in the study aged over 18 years.
Results: During the COVID-19 period, a significant increase in the number of meals eaten daily, the number of times of fruits and vegetable intake, the number of sweets, cakes, and biscuits, the number of hours of sleep per day, the time using the internet and social media were observed more than at in the before COVID-19 pandemic period. However, the number of running exercise or physical activity was significantly reduced.
Conclusion: In this study, the dietary and lifestyle habits have changed among the Saudis during the COVID-19 period. Future large-scale similar studies should be undertaken to confirm the results of the study.