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Int J Epidemiol. 1993 Oct;22(5):855-68.

Food sources of nutrients in the diet of elderly Italians: I. Macronutrients and lipids.

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  • 1Divisione Di Epidemiologia, Istituto Nazionale Tumori, Milano, Italy.


The major sources of macronutrients in the Italian diet were assessed. Elderly Italians, aged > or = 60 recorded their weighed intake for a 7-day period. A total of 945 subjects from 14 centres throughout Italy participated during the period 1983-1987. These data were used to quantify the contribution of individual foods to the total intake of and variability in intake of kilocalories, protein, carbohydrate, total fat, saturated fat, oleic acid, polyunsaturated fatty acids, linoleic acid, and cholesterol. The foods ranked one to five for Italy were compared to the top five foods contributing to these nutrients in the diet of the elderly in the US based on the NHANES II Survey (1976-1980). These data provide information for the design of an Italian data-based quantitative food frequency questionnaire. They are also of interest in their description of an industrialized, well-nourished population with a dietary pattern markedly different from the US--lower in saturated fat, higher in complex carbohydrate and higher in alcohol.

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