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Front Nutr. 2017 Jun 14;4:25. doi: 10.3389/fnut.2017.00025. eCollection 2017.

Dietary Patterns Characterized by High Meat Consumption Are Associated with Other Unhealthy Life Styles and Depression Symptoms.

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EpiDoC Unit, Centro de Estudos de Doenças Crónicas (CEDOC) da NOVA Medical School, Universidade Nova de Lisboa (NMS/UNL), Lisboa, Portugal.
Escola Superior de Saúde do Instituto Politécnico de Leiria, Leiria, Portugal.
Faculdade de Ciências da Nutrição e Alimentação da Universidade do Porto, Porto, Portugal.
Programa Nacional para a Promoção da Alimentação Saudável, Direção-Geral da Saúde, Lisboa, Portugal.
Sociedade Portuguesa de Reumatologia, Lisboa, Portugal.
Rheumatology Research Unit, Instituto de Medicina Molecular, Lisboa, Portugal.
Department of Public Health and Nursing, Faculty of Medicine and Health Sciences, Norwegian University of Science and Technology, Trondheim, Norway.
NTNU Center for Health Promotion Research, Trondheim, Norway.
NOVA Information Management School, Universidade Nova de Lisboa, Lisboa, Portugal.
Serviço de Reumatologia do Hospital Egas Moniz - Centro Hospitalar Lisboa Ocidental (CHLO - E.P.E.), Lisboa, Portugal.



We aimed to identify dietary patterns (DPs) of Portuguese adults, to assess their socioeconomic, demographic, lifestyle determinants, and to identify their impact on health.


EpiDoC 2 study included 10,153 Portuguese adults from the EpiDoC Cohort, a population-based study. In this study, trained research assistants using computer-assisted telephone interview collected socioeconomic, demographic, dietary, lifestyles, and health information from March 2013 to July 2015. Cluster analysis was performed, based on questions regarding the number of meals, weekly frequency of soup consumption, vegetables, fruit, meat, fish, dairy products, and daily water intake. Factors associated with DP were identified through logistic regression models.


Two DPs were identified: the "meat dietary pattern" and the "fruit & vegetables dietary pattern." After multivariable adjustment, women (OR = 0.52; p < 0.001), older adults (OR = 0.97; p < 0.001), and individuals with more years of education (OR = 0.96; p = 0.025) were less likely to adopt the "meat dietary pattern," while individuals in a situation of job insecurity/unemployment (OR = 1.49; p = 0.013), Azores island residents (OR = 1.40; p = 0.026), current smoking (OR = 1.58; p = 0.001), daily alcohol intake (OR = 1.46; p = 0.023), and physically inactive (OR = 1.86; p < 0.001) were positively and significantly associated with "meat dietary pattern." Moreover, individuals with depression symptoms (OR = 1.50; p = 0.018) and the ones who did lower number of medical appointments in the previous year (OR = 0.98; p = 0.025) were less likely to report this DP.


Our results suggest that unhealthy DPs (meat DP) are part of a lifestyle behavior that includes physical inactivity, smoking habits, and alcohol consumption. Moreover, depression symptoms are also associated with unhealthy DPs.


Portugal; dietary patterns; health status; lifestyles behaviors; mental health

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