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Nutrients 2018, 10(12), 1894; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu10121894

Low Adherence to the Mediterranean Diet in Isolated Adolescents: The Mediation Effects of Stress

1
Department of Health Psychology, Faculty of Health Science, University of Alicante, 03690 Alicante, Spain
2
Department of Nursing, Faculty of Health Science, University of Alicante, 03690 Alicante, Spain
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 8 November 2018 / Revised: 20 November 2018 / Accepted: 25 November 2018 / Published: 3 December 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Diet Quality and Health Outcomes)
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Abstract

Loneliness perception during adolescence has been increased dramatically in recent years. Changes in lifestyle and difficulties in social interaction could explain this increased phenomenon. As described in previous research, this fact has been associated with the development of high stress levels and dysfunctional lifestyles, in which eating habits play a main role. In this regard, loneliness has been classically associated with poor eating habits, fundamentally the consumption of processed food with little nutritional value. However, the relationship between loneliness and healthy eating patterns, such as the Mediterranean Diet (MD), has not been previously analyzed. The main aim of the present study was to identify the relationship between perceived loneliness, stress, dietary habits, and adherence to the MD in a sample of 527 Spanish adolescents. The obtained results show a significant association between high perceived loneliness and high stress levels with lower MD adherence. Hence, adolescents with high perceived loneliness exhibit poor dietary habits in comparison to those counterparts with low perceived loneliness. Mediation analyses demonstrated an indirect effect of the loneliness on adherence to the MD through the mediation effect of stress. These findings point out a possible mechanism that underlies the classic association between loneliness and health deterioration, based on a poor adherence to a healthy dietary pattern, such as the MD. View Full-Text
Keywords: Mediterranean Diet; loneliness; stress; adolescence Mediterranean Diet; loneliness; stress; adolescence
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Ferrer-Cascales, R.; Albaladejo-Blázquez, N.; Ruiz-Robledillo, N.; Rubio-Aparicio, M.; Laguna-Pérez, A.; Zaragoza-Martí, A. Low Adherence to the Mediterranean Diet in Isolated Adolescents: The Mediation Effects of Stress. Nutrients 2018, 10, 1894.

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