RESEARCH SUPPORT, U.S. GOV'T, NON-P.H.S.
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Does food group consumption vary by differences in socioeconomic, demographic, and lifestyle factors in young adults? The Bogalusa Heart Study.

OBJECTIVE: To examine if food group consumption varies by differences in socioeconomic, demographic, and lifestyle factors in young adults from a semirural setting in Louisiana.

DESIGN: Cross-sectional.

SUBJECTS: Young adults (n=1,266, 74% European American, 26% African American; 39% men, 61% women) aged 20 to 38 years, enrolled in the Bogalusa Heart Study.

MEASURES: Food group consumption was assessed by a food frequency questionnaire. Socioeconomic (eg, income and education), demographic (eg, age, sex, and ethnicity), and lifestyle (eg, marital status and physical activity) information was obtained by a self-administered questionnaire and the subjects were stratified according to these groups.

STATISTICAL ANALYSES: Analysis of covariance (adjusted for covariates) was used to detect differences in the mean servings of food groups consumed per day between the various socioeconomic, demographic, and lifestyle groups.

RESULTS: Compared to income$45,000 had lower consumption of burgers/sandwiches (P<0.05) and those with income levels from $30,001 to $45,000 had lower consumption of mixed dishes (P<0.05). Intake of cereals/breads (P<0.05), dairy products (P<0.01), fruits/100% fruit juices (P<0.001), and vegetables (P<0.001) was higher in subjects with >12 years of education. European-American men consumed more servings of dairy products (P<0.05) and sweetened beverages (P<0.05) than African-American men. European-American women consumed more servings of dairy products (P<0.05), vegetables (P<0.05), and fats (P<0.05) than African-American women. African Americans (men and women) consumed more servings of fruits/100% fruit juices (P<0.0001) than European Americans (men and women), respectively. Married individuals consumed more servings of snacks/desserts (P<0.05), but fewer servings of alcoholic beverages (P<0.0001) than those who were unmarried. Active individuals consumed more servings of fruits/100% fruit juices (P<0.05) and fewer servings of burgers/sandwiches (P<0.05) than inactive individuals.

CONCLUSIONS: These findings suggest that food group consumption varies by socioeconomic, demographic, and lifestyle factors in young adults from a semirural setting. Food and nutrition professionals who encounter diverse populations need to consider the influence of income, education, sex, ethnicity, marital status, and physical activity on food consumption patterns when planning diets, nutrition education programs, and interventions for young adults.

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