The aim of this study was to examine empirical dietary patterns in UK adults and their association with sociodemographic characteristics, lifestyle factors, self-reported nutrient intake, nutrient biomarkers, and the Nutrient-based Diet Quality Score (NDQS) using National Diet and Nutrition Survey data 2008–2012 (n
= 2083; mean age 49 years; 43.3% male). Four patterns explained 13.6% of the total variance: ‘Snacks, fast food, fizzy drinks’ (SFFFD), ‘Fruit, vegetables, oily fish’ (FVOF), ‘Meat, potatoes, beer’ (MPB), and ‘Sugary foods, dairy’ (SFD). ‘SFFFD’ was associated positively with: being male; smoking; body mass index (BMI); urinary sodium; intake of non-milk extrinsic sugars (NMES), fat and starch; and negatively with: age; plasma carotenoids; and NDQS. ‘FVOF’ was associated positively with: being non-white; age; income; socioeconomic classification (National Statistics Socio-economic Classifications; NSSEC); plasma carotenoids; intake of non-starch polysaccharides and polyunsaturated fatty acids. It was negatively associated with: being male, smoking, BMI, urinary sodium, intake of saturated fat; and NMES and NDQS. Whilst the patterns explained only 13.6% of the total variance, they were associated with self-reported nutrient intake, biomarkers of nutrient intake, sociodemographic and lifestyle variables, and the NDQS. These findings provide support for dietary patterns analyses as a means of exploring dietary intake in the UK population to inform public health nutrition policy and guidance.
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