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Am J Epidemiol. 2001 Dec 15;154(12):1150-9.

Food patterns and components of the metabolic syndrome in men and women: a cross-sectional study within the Malmö Diet and Cancer cohort.

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Department of Medicine, Orthopedics and Surgery, Lund University, University Hospital, Malmö, Sweden.


This study examined the relations between food patterns and five components of the metabolic syndrome in a sample of Swedish men (n = 2,040) and women (n = 2,959) aged 45-68 years who joined the Malmö Diet and Cancer study from November 1991 to February 1994. Baseline examinations included an interview-administered diet history, a self-administered questionnaire, blood pressure and anthropologic measurements, and blood samples donated after an overnight fast. Cluster analysis identified six food patterns for which 43 food group variables were used. Logistic regression analysis was used to examine the risk of each component (hyperinsulinemia, hyperglycemia, hypertension, dyslipidemia, and central obesity) and food patterns, controlling for potential confounders. The study demonstrated relations, independent of specific nutrients, between food patterns and hyperglycemia and central obesity in men and hyperinsulinemia in women. Food patterns dominated by fiber bread provided favorable effects, while food patterns high in refined bread or in cheese, cake, and alcoholic beverages contributed adverse effects. In women, food patterns dominated by milk-fat-based spread showed protective relations with hyperinsulinemia. Relations between risk factors and food patterns may partly depend on gender differences in metabolism or food consumption and on variations in confounders across food patterns.

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