Dietary patterns and nutritional adequacy in a Mediterranean country Academic Article uri icon


  • Dietary patterns have been related to health outcomes and morbi-mortality. Mediterranean diet indexes are correlated with adequate nutrient intake. The objective of the present study was to analyse the adequacy of nutrient intake of a posteriori defined Mediterranean (MDP) and Western (WDP) diet patterns in the Seguimiento Universidad de Navarra (SUN) cohort. A sample of 17 197 subjects participated in the study. Participants completed a 136-item validated semi-quantitative FFQ. Principal component analysis was used to define dietary patterns. Individuals were classified according to quintiles of adherence based on dietary pattern scores. Non-dietary variables, such as smoking and physical activity habits, were also taken into account. The probability approach was used to assess nutrient intake adequacy of certain vitamins (vitamins B12, B6, B3, B2, B1, A, C, D and E) and minerals (Na, Zn, iodine, Se, folic acid, P, Mg, K, Fe and Ca). Logistic regression analysis was used to assess the adequacy of nutrient intake according to adherence to dietary patterns. WDP and MDP were defined. A higher quintile of adherence to an MDP was associated to a lower prevalence of inadequacy for the intake of Zn, iodine, vitamin E, Mg, Fe, vitamin B1, vitamin A, Se, vitamin C and folic acid. The adjusted OR for not reaching at least six (or at least ten) nutrient recommendations were 0.09 (95 % CI: 0.07, 0.11) (and 0.02 (95 % CI: 0.00, 0.16)) for the upper quintile of MDP and 4.4 (95 % CI: 3.6, 5.5) and 2.5 (95 % CI: 1.1, 5.4) for the WDP. The MDP was associated to a better profile of nutrient intake.

publication date

  • July 2009