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Food Nutr Res. 2017 Jul 6;61(1):1341809. doi: 10.1080/16546628.2017.1341809. eCollection 2017.

Food consumption, nutrient intake, and dietary patterns in Ghanaian migrants in Europe and their compatriots in Ghana.

Author information

Department of Molecular Epidemiology, German Institute of Human Nutrition Potsdam-Rehbruecke, Nuthetal, Germany.
Department of Public Health, Academic Medical Center/University of Amsterdam, Amsterdam, The Netherlands.
Regional Institute for Population Studies, University of Ghana, Legon, Ghana.
Department of Non-communicable Disease Epidemiology, Faculty of Epidemiology and Population Health, London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine, London, UK.
Institute of Tropical Medicine and International Health, Charité - Universitaetsmedizin, Berlin, Germany.
Faculty of Science, Kwame Nkrumah University of Science and Technology, Kumasi, Ghana.
Julius Global Health, Julius Center for Health Sciences and Primary Care, University Medical Center Utrecht, Utrecht, The Netherlands.
Division of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, School of Public Health, Faculty of Health Sciences, University of the Witwatersrand, Johannesburg, South Africa.
International Diabetes Federation, Africa Region, Kampala, Uganda.


Background: West African immigrants in Europe are disproportionally affected by metabolic conditions compared to European host populations. Nutrition transition through urbanisation and migration may contribute to this observations, but remains to be characterised. Objective: We aimed to describe the dietary behaviour and its socio-demographic factors among Ghanaian migrants in Europe and their compatriots living different Ghanaian settings. Methods: The multi-centre, cross-sectional RODAM (Research on Obesity and Diabetes among African Migrants) study was conducted among Ghanaian adults in rural and urban Ghana, and Europe. Dietary patterns were identified by principal component analysis. Results: Contributions of macronutrient to the daily energy intake was different across the three study sites. Three dietary patterns were identified. Adherence to the 'mixed' pattern was associated with female sex, higher education, and European residency. The 'rice, pasta, meat, and fish' pattern was associated with male sex, younger age, higher education, and urban Ghanaian environment. Adherence to the 'roots, tubers, and plantain' pattern was mainly related to rural Ghanaian residency. Conclusion: We observed differences in food preferences across study sites: in rural Ghana, diet concentrated on starchy foods; in urban Ghana, nutrition was dominated by animal-based products; and in Europe, diet appeared to be highly diverse.


RODAM; diet; dietary patterns; nutrient intake; nutrition transition; principal component analysis; sub-Sahara African populations

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