Poster Topical Area: Community and Public Health Nutrition

Location: Auditorium

Poster Board Number: 109

P06-088 - Foods, nutrients, and diet quality intake and its determinants among adults living in Puerto Rico

Monday, Jun 11
8:00 AM – 3:00 PM

Objectives: Little is known about the diet quality of adults living in Puerto Rico (PR). We aimed to analyze intake of nutrients and food groups, and factors correlated with diet quality, of 248 adults aged 30-75y participating in the Puerto Rico Assessment of Diet, Lifestyle, and Diseases study in San Juan, PR. Methods: Sociodemographic and lifestyle characteristics were self-reported. Diet was assessed using a validated semi-quantitative food frequency questionnaire; nutrients and food groups were assessed with the Minnesota Nutrition Data System for Research software. Diet quality was defined using the Alternate Healthy Eating Index-2010 (AHEI). Linear regression models were used to determine AHEI means by categories of sociodemographic and lifestyle factors. Results: Most PR adults met the Estimated Average Requirement (EAR) for folate and vitamins B12 and B6; 61% met magnesium and 56% met calcium EARs. All adults reported exceeding the EAR for iron and adequate intake (AI) of sodium; only 4% met the EAR for vitamin D and 7% met the AI for potassium. More PR adults 61-75y compared to 30-60y met the EAR for calcium and vitamin B12 but fewer met the AI of potassium; they also reported higher intake of vegetables, fruit, and whole grains, and lower intake of red/processed meats and omega-3 fats. Main contributors to total energy intake were sweets/pastries (9.8%), rice (7.1%), fruit juice (6.1%), pasta (5.3%), beans/legumes (4.8%), potatoes (3.9%), and dark-green leafy vegetables (3.6%). Mean (SD) AHEI score was 59.8 (11.0), with the lowest adherence to recommended intake noted for red/processed meats (1.2%), fruit (2.4%), sodium (2.4%), sugary beverages (3.2%), and polyunsaturated fats (5.4%), and higher adherence for nuts and legumes (29.8%), omega-3 fats (21.3%), and whole grains (21.0%). Significantly lower AHEI scores were noted for younger adults (30-44y) vs. older, Puerto Ricans (vs. Dominicans/other), those with less than high school education, married or divorced/widowed (vs. single), currently smoking, and sedentary (vs. physically active). Conclusions: Adults living in PR report some healthy and some poor dietary practices, providing an opportunity to improve diet at the population level. Identifying factors correlated with diet quality may help target those at most need of dietary improvement.



Funding Source:

Private anonymous donations; a Dry Bean Health Research Program Incentive Award from the Northarvest Bean Growers Association; institutional funds from Fundación de Investigación; and the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute grant number K01-HL120951.


Percent of adults 30-75y/o living in Puerto Rico who meet the recommended intake of food and nutrient components of the Alternate Healthy Eating Index

CoAuthors: Martha Tamez – Harvard TH Chan School of Public Health; Rui Xiao – Patients like me; Carlos Rios-Bedoya – Fundacion de Investigacion de Puerto Rico; Sherman Bigornia – University of New Hampshire; Sabrina Noel – University of Massachusetts Lowell; Katherine Tucker – University of Massachusetts Lowell

Josiemer Mattei

Assistant Professor
Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health
Boston, Massachusetts