Food-based dietary guidelines

Food-based dietary guidelines - Croatia

Official name

Dietary guidelines (Croatian: Prehrambene smjernice).

Publication year

The dietary guidelines for adults were published in 2002. The guidelines for children 7–10 years old were published in 2008, and those for adolescents 11–15 years old in 2012.

Process and stakeholders

The guidelines were developed by the Ministry of Health, in collaboration with the Ministry of Education, the Croatian Institute of Public Health and clinical hospitals.

They are endorsed by the Ministry of Health.

Intended audience

There are three sets of guidelines for different population groups: adults, children 7–10 years and children and adolescents 11–15 years of age.

Food guide

Croatia uses a food pyramid divided into four levels. Cereals, tubers and legumes are placed at the bottom of the pyramid; vegetables and fruits take the second level; animal source foods can be found on the third level. At the top there are fats and oils, and highly processed foods rich in sugar and fat whose consumption should be minimized.


  • Do not eat too much food.
  • Eat plenty of wholegrain cereals.
  • Eat five or more servings of fruits and vegetables a day.
  • Choose lean meats (e.g. poultry, rabbit) and fish over red meat.
  • Include in your daily diet high-quality vegetable oils, such as olive and pumpkin seed oil.
  • Limit your intake of sweets; replace them with nuts and dried fruits.
  • Limit your intake of fat and salt.
  • Divide your daily food intake into five or six small meals: breakfast, snack, lunch, snack and dinner.
  • Breakfast is the most important meal.
  • Snacks should be chosen carefully – give preference to fresh and dried fruits, nuts and fermented milk products.