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Dietary patterns in Swedish adults: results from a national dietary survey
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Medicine and Pharmacy, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Public Health and Caring Sciences, Clinical Nutrition and Metabolism.
Uppsala University, Disciplinary Domain of Humanities and Social Sciences, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Food, Nutrition and Dietetics.
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2016 (English)In: British Journal of Nutrition, ISSN 0007-1145, E-ISSN 1475-2662, Vol. 115, no 1, 95-104 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Dietary patterns derived by statistical procedures is a way to identify overall dietary habits in specific populations. The aim of this study was to identify and characterise dietary patterns in Swedish adults using data from the national dietary survey Riksmaten adults 2010–11 (952 women, 788 men). Principal component analyses were used and two patterns were identified in both sexes: a healthy pattern loading positively on vegetables, fruits, fish and seafood, and vegetable oils, and negatively on refined bread and fast food, and a Swedish traditional pattern loading positively on potatoes, meat and processed meat, full-fat milk products, sweet bakery products, sweet condiments and margarine. In addition, a light-meal pattern was identified in women with positive loadings on fibre-rich bread, cheese, rice, pasta and food grain dishes, substitute products for meat and dairy products, candies and tea. The healthy pattern was positively correlated to dietary fibre (r 0·51–0·58) and n-3 (r 0·25–0·31) (all P<0·0001), and had a higher nutrient density of folate, vitamin D and Se. The Swedish traditional and the light-meal pattern were positively correlated to added sugar (r 0·20–0·25) and the Swedish traditional also to SFA (r 0·13–0·21) (all P<0·0001); both patterns were in general negatively correlated to micronutrients. Dietary pattern scores were associated with, for example, age, physical activity, education and income. In conclusion, we identified three major dietary patterns among Swedish adults. The patterns can be further used for examining the association between whole diet and health outcomes.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
2016. Vol. 115, no 1, 95-104 p.
Keyword [en]
Dietary pattern, Food habits, National survey, Principal component analysis, Total diet quality, Sweden
National Category
Nutrition and Dietetics
URN: urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-249160DOI: 10.1017/S0007114515004110ISI: 000367234800012PubMedID: 26490112OAI: oai:DiVA.org:uu-249160DiVA: diva2:802170
Forte, Swedish Research Council for Health, Working Life and Welfare, 2011-1166
Available from: 2015-04-11 Created: 2015-04-11 Last updated: 2016-01-26Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Dietary Patterns: Identification and Health Implications in the Swedish Population
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Dietary Patterns: Identification and Health Implications in the Swedish Population
2015 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

We eat foods not nutrients. What is more, we eat them in combinations. Consequently, capturing our complex food habits is likely an advantage in nutrition research. The overall aim of this doctoral thesis was therefore to investigate dietary patterns in the Swedish population –nutrient intakes, nutritional biomarkers and health aspects.

Prostate cancer is the most common cancer among men in the developed world. However, the impact of dietary factors on disease risk is largely unknown. In Study I we investigated the association between a Mediterranean- and a Low-carbohydrate-high-protein dietary pattern and prostate cancer risk, in a cohort of elderly Swedish men. The latter (but not the former) was associated, inversely, with prostate cancer risk when taking validity in food records into account.

Diet is one of our main exposure routes to environmental contaminants. Hence, such exposure could act as a mediating factor in the relation between diet and health. In Study II we investigated the association between; a Mediterranean- and a Low-carbohydrate-high-protein dietary pattern, as well as the official dietary recommendations, and circulating levels of environmental contaminants, in an elderly Swedish population. The first two patterns were positively related to levels of both persistent organic pollutants and heavy metals, whilst the dietary recommendations were inversely associated to dioxin and lead.

Finally, although dietary patterns are likely to influence health, little is known about current dietary patterns in Sweden. In Study III we used a data-reduction method to identify dietary patterns in a nationwide sample of the Swedish population. Two major patterns were derived; a Healthy pattern of foods generally considered healthy (e.g. vegetables, fruits, fish and vegetable-oils) and a Swedish traditional pattern (with e.g. meats, potatoes, sauces, non-Keyhole milk-products, sweet-bakery products and margarine). Derived patterns were associated to population characteristics and the Healthy dietary pattern was inversely associated to anthropometric variables in Study IV. Dietary characteristics of the patterns were well reflected in correlations to nutrient intake and (to a lesser extent) in nutritional biomarkers.

In conclusion dietary patterns for overall health should be considered, as well as other lifestyle-factors, when interpreting results in nutrition epidemiology and establishing dietary recommendations.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Uppsala: Acta Universitatis Upsaliensis, 2015. 91 p.
Digital Comprehensive Summaries of Uppsala Dissertations from the Faculty of Medicine, ISSN 1651-6206 ; 1104
Dietary Pattern, Dietary Recommendations, Dietary Survey, Environmental Contaminants, Healthy Diet Indicator, Heatlhy dietary pattern, Low-Carbohydrate, Mediterranean diet, Nutritional Biomarkers, Obesity, Overweight, Principal Component Analysis, Prostate Cancer, Sweden, Traditional dietary pattern
National Category
Medical and Health Sciences
Research subject
Medical Science; Nutrition
urn:nbn:se:uu:diva-250280 (URN)978-91-554-9242-7 (ISBN)
Public defence
2015-06-04, Auditorium Minus, Museum Gustavianum, Akademigatan 3, Uppsala, 09:15 (English)
Available from: 2015-05-12 Created: 2015-04-14 Last updated: 2015-07-07Bibliographically approved

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Ax, ErikaAndersson, AgnetaCederholm, TommySjögren, Per
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