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Nutrients 2017, 9(3), 274; doi:10.3390/nu9030274

Food Insecurity, Poor Diet Quality, and Suboptimal Intakes of Folate and Iron Are Independently Associated with Perceived Mental Health in Canadian Adults

1
School of Nursing, University of British Columbia and Health Science Program, Department of Biology, Kwantlen Polytechnic University, Surrey, BC V3W 2M8, Canada
2
Department of Computer Science, University of Illinois Springfield and Department of Computer Science, Simon Fraser University, Burnaby, BC V5A 1S6, Canada
3
Cumming School of Medicine, University of Calgary, Calgary, AB T2N 1N4, Canada
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 3 January 2017 / Revised: 4 March 2017 / Accepted: 10 March 2017 / Published: 14 March 2017
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Nutrition in Mental Health)
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Abstract

Background: To address nutrition-related population mental health data gaps, we examined relationships among food insecurity, diet quality, and perceived mental health. Methods: Stratified and logistic regression analyses of respondents aged 19–70 years from the Canadian Community Health Survey, Cycle 2.2 were conducted (n = 15,546). Measures included the Household Food Security Survey Module, diet quality (i.e., comparisons to the Dietary Reference Intakes, Healthy Eating Index), perceived mental health (poor versus good), sociodemographics, and smoking. Results: In this sample, 6.9% were food insecure and 4.5% reported poor mental health. Stratified analysis of food security and mental health status by age/gender found associations for poor diet quality, protein, fat, fibre, and several micronutrients (p-values < 0.05); those who were food insecure tended to have higher suboptimal intakes (p-values < 0.05). After adjustment for covariates, associations in relation to mental health emerged for food insecurity (OR = 1.60, 95% CI 1.45–1.71), poor diet quality (1.61, 95% CI 1.34–1.81), and suboptimal intakes of folate (OR = 1.58, 95% CI 1.17–1.90) and iron (OR = 1.45, 95% CI 1.23–1.88). Conclusions: Population approaches that improve food security and intakes of high quality diets may protect people from poor mental health. View Full-Text
Keywords: food insecurity; diet quality; nutrient intakes; mental health food insecurity; diet quality; nutrient intakes; mental health
This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Davison, K.M.; Gondara, L.; Kaplan, B.J. Food Insecurity, Poor Diet Quality, and Suboptimal Intakes of Folate and Iron Are Independently Associated with Perceived Mental Health in Canadian Adults. Nutrients 2017, 9, 274.

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