Attitudes can be predictors of certain health-related behaviours. The attitudes of young females towards health and taste have not been yet fully examined and their associations with dietary behaviours remain unclear. The aim of the study was to investigate if attitudes are associated with dietary patterns in a representative sample of Polish girls. The study population consisted of 1107 girls, aged 13–21 and living in Poland. Attitudes were assessed using the Health and Taste Attitudes Scale (HTAS) and categorised as negative, neutral or positive. Dietary data was obtained using a Food Frequency Questionnaire. Dietary patterns (DPs), derived previously with a Principal Component Analysis (PCA), were ‘Traditional Polish’, ‘Fruit and vegetables’, ‘Fast food and sweets’ and ‘Dairy and fats’. The associations between attitudes and DPs were assessed using Spearman’s correlation coefficients and logistic regression. The reference group were girls with neutral attitudes. Odds ratios (ORs) were adjusted for age, socioeconomic status (SES), and body mass index (BMI). The correlations between attitudes and DPs ranged from −0.28 for attitudes towards health and ‘Fast food and sweets’ and ‘Traditional Polish’ DPs to 0.33 for attitudes towards health and the ‘Fruit and vegetables’ DP (p
< 0.05). In the logistic regression analysis, the strongest associations within health-related HTAS subscales were observed between negative attitudes towards natural products and the ‘Fast food and sweets’ DP (OR: 10.93; 95% CI: 3.32–36.01) and between positive attitudes towards health and the ‘Fruit and vegetables’ DP (OR: 5.10; 3.11–8.37). The strongest associations within taste-related HTAS subscales were observed between positive attitudes towards craving for sweet foods and the ‘Traditional Polish’ DP (OR: 1.93; 1.43–2.61) and between positive attitudes towards using food as a reward and the ‘Dairy and fats’ DP (OR: 2.08; 1.22–3.55) as well as the ‘Fast food and sweets’ DP (OR: 2.07; 1.14–3.74). Positive attitudes towards health were associated with a pro-healthy dietary pattern characterised by the consumption of fruit and vegetables, while negative attitudes towards natural products as well as a strong craving for sweets and using food as a reward were associated with less healthy dietary patterns. To improve the dietary habits of girls and young women, positive attitudes towards health should be strengthened and supported by emphasizing the sensory values of pro-healthy foods.
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