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United States Department of Agriculture

Agricultural Research Service


item O'neil, Carol
item Yang, Su-jau
item Nicklas, Theresa
item Berenson, Gerald

Submitted to: Journal Of The American Dietetic Association
Publication Type: Abstract Only
Publication Acceptance Date: 8/1/2006
Publication Date: 9/17/2006
Citation: O'Neil, C.E., Yang, S.J., Nicklas, T.A., Berenson, G.S. 2006. Food patterns associated with components of metabolic syndrome in young adults [abstract]. Journal of the American Dietetic Associaton. 106(8):A-71.

Interpretive Summary:

Technical Abstract: Young adults are a nutritionally vulnerable, poorly studied group; little is known about their risk factors for metabolic syndrome. Dietary intake data were collected in 1995-1996 on 1,012 young adults (20-38 years) (61% female; 21% black) using the youth/adolescent questionnaire, a semi-quantitative food-frequency questionnaire. Demographics, anthropometrics, blood pressure, insulin sensitivity, and lipid profiles were quantified; a risk score for metabolic syndrome was calculated. Food items were placed into 36 predefined food groups; factor analysis retained two factors based on their eigen-values, the Scree test, and interpretability of derived factors: 'low fat/sugar pattern' and 'high fat/sugar pattern'. Each group explained 31% of the variance. Linear regression was used to examine the association between these patterns and health outcomes; ANOVA was used to test mean intake differences in the patterns by socioeconomic status. Blacks (p < 0.0001) and males (p < 0.0001) consumed more servings of high fat/sugar foods than whites and females. Young adults (p < 0.05) and those with higher incomes/education (p < 0.01) consumed more servings of high fat/sugar foods. The mean number of servings of low fat/low sugar foods was higher in young adults who were very physically active outside of work (p < 0.05). Waist circumference, triceps skin folds, systolic blood pressure, and triglycerides were negatively associated (p < 0.01) with the low fat/low sugar eating pattern, which in turn was negatively associated with metabolic syndrome (p < 0.01). These data suggest that food patterns of young adults are clearly linked with socioeconomic factors and risk factors for metabolic syndrome.

Last Modified: 10/19/2017
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