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Eur J Clin Nutr. 2014 Mar;68(3):287-94. doi: 10.1038/ejcn.2013.279. Epub 2014 Jan 8.

Alcoholic beverage preference and diet in a representative Dutch population: the Dutch national food consumption survey 2007-2010.

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Division of Human Nutrition, Wageningen University, Wageningen, The Netherlands.



The habitual consumption of a specific type of alcoholic beverage may be related to the overall dietary pattern. The objective of this cross-sectional study was to investigate associations between alcoholic beverage preference and dietary intake in The Netherlands.


A total of 2100 men and women from the Dutch National Food Consumption Survey 2007-2010 were studied. A general questionnaire assessed alcoholic beverage preference and two non-consecutive 24-h dietary recalls assessed overall diet. Mean nutrient and food group intakes, and adherence to the 2006 Dutch dietary guidelines across categories of alcoholic beverage preference were compared and adjusted for age, sex, body mass index (BMI), education, smoking, physical activity, energy intake and frequency and absolute alcohol consumption.


Largest differences in dietary habits were detected between persons who preferred wine and those who preferred beer. Persons with a beer preference had a higher absolute intake of meat, soft drinks, margarine and snacks. In contrast, persons with a wine preference had a higher absolute consumption of healthy foods. However, after multiple adjustments, wine consumers still consumed less energy and more vegetables and fruit juices compared with beer consumers. Adherence to the Dutch dietary guidelines did not differ between preference categories after multiple adjustments.


In this cross-sectional analysis in a representative sample of the Dutch population, a beer preference was associated with less healthy dietary behaviour, especially compared with wine preference. However, these differences were largely explained by other socio-demographic and lifestyle factors. These results suggest that alcoholic beverage preference may not be independently related to diet.

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