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Am J Epidemiol. 2001 May 15;153(10):969-77.

Trends in nutrient intake of 10-year-old children over two decades (1973-1994) : the Bogalusa Heart Study.

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  • 1Children's Nutrition Research Center, Department of Pediatrics, Baylor College of Medicine, Houston, TX 77030, USA.


Dietary intakes of 10-year-old children were examined in seven cross-sectional surveys to observe secular trends in nutrient intake and food consumption patterns over 2 decades (1973-1994). Total energy intake remained unchanged from 1973 to 1994. However, when expressed as energy per kilogram body weight, intake decreased from 65.5 kcal in 1973 to 55.4 kcal in 1994 because children's weight increased. A significant trend was noted in ponderal index, which increased from 12.31 (1973-1974) to 13.71 (1992-1994), with an actual weight gain of 1.45 kg from 1973 to 1979 and 2.71 kg from 1981 to 1994. Linear trends also were noted for total fat (negative), saturated fat (negative), dietary cholesterol (negative), polyunsaturated fat (positive), and total carbohydrate (positive). There was a significant increase in percent energy from protein and carbohydrate and a significant decrease in percent energy from fat, primarily saturated and monounsaturated fat. Trends in nutrient intakes of children reflected trends in food consumption. The percentage of total fat from fats/oils, mixed meats, eggs, milk, pork, and desserts decreased, while that from poultry, cheese, and snacks increased. Although more children met dietary recommendations for total fat, saturated fat, and dietary cholesterol, the vast majority continued to exceed prudent diet recommendations.

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