Pre-enrollment diets of Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension trial participants. DASH Collaborative Research Group.
A large body of evidence suggests that several nutrients are related to blood pressure. Less is known about the eating patterns of special populations, such as those at risk for hypertension, or how demographic factors affect the diets of these populations. This article characterizes the usual diets of participants before they enrolled in the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) trial. During screening for DASH, 380 participants completed the National Cancer Institute food frequency questionnaire. Nutrient and food group intake, the Keys score (a measure of a diet's atherogenicity), and the Diet Quality Index were estimated from the food frequency questionnaire. The effects of age, sex, race, baseline weight, and education on these dietary factors were assessed among DASH participants and compared with similar data from the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey and other published reports. Among DASH participants, African-Americans reported lower intakes of dairy products (P < .001), calcium (P < .001), and magnesium (P < .05) than did whites. Older women reported greater intakes of calcium, magnesium, and potassium (all P < .05) and less fat (P < .05) than did younger women. Older men consumed fewer servings of fruits (P < .03), less vitamin C (P < .05), and had a higher Keys score (P < .05) than did younger men. Heavier (body mass index > or = 25) participants reported lower intakes of protein and potassium, but higher fat and energy intakes (all P < .05). Taken together, these data show that younger, overweight African-American women have the least healthful diets, because they consume more atherogenic foods and fewer of the nutrients related to decreased blood pressure. Overall Diet Quality Index scores did not differ between African-American and white participants. Despite differences in dietary assessment methods between the population samples of DASH and the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, within each population sample patterns of micronutrient intake were similar between African-American and white participants.
Karanja, NM; McCullough, ML; Kumanyika, SK; Pedula, KL; Windhauser, MM; Obarzanek, E; Lin, PH; Champagne, CM; Swain, JF
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