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Article

Low Adherence to the Mediterranean Diet Is Associated with Poor Socioeconomic Status and Younger Age: A Cross-Sectional Analysis of the EpiDoC Cohort

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Comprehensive Health Research Centre (CHRC), NOVA Medical School, Universidade Nova de Lisboa (NMS/UNL), 1099-085 Lisboa, Portugal
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EpiDoC Unit, Centro de Estudos de Doenças Crónicas (CEDOC), NOVA Medical School, Universidade Nova de Lisboa (NMS/UNL), 1150-082 Lisboa, Portugal
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EpiSaúde Sociedade Científica, 7005-837 Évora, Portugal
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Faculdade de Ciências da Nutrição e Alimentação, Universidade do Porto, 4200-465 Porto, Portugal
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Programa Nacional para a Promoção da Alimentação Saudável, Direção-Geral da Saúde, 1049-005 Lisboa, Portugal
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Rheumatology Unit, Hospital dos Lusíadas, 1500-458 Lisboa, Portugal
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Jose Lara
Nutrients 2022, 14(6), 1239; https://doi.org/10.3390/nu14061239
Received: 1 February 2022 / Revised: 8 March 2022 / Accepted: 10 March 2022 / Published: 15 March 2022
(This article belongs to the Section Nutritional Epidemiology)
The Mediterranean diet (MD) is recognized as one of the healthiest dietary patterns as it has been consistently associated with several beneficial health outcomes. Adherence to the MD pattern has been decreasing in southern European countries for the last decades, especially among low socioeconomic groups. The aim of this study was to assess the adherence to the MD in Portugal, to evaluate regional differences, and explore associated factors (sociodemographic, economic, and lifestyles behaviors). This study used the third data collection wave of the Epidemiology of Chronic Diseases Cohort Study (EpiDoC 3). MD adherence was assessed using the Portuguese-validated MD adherence score (MEDAS) questionnaire. Non-adjusted and adjusted logistic regression models were used to assess the risk factors for low MD adherence and individual MEDAS items. In this cross-sectional evaluation of the EpiDoC 3 cohort study (n = 5647), 28.8% of the Portuguese population had low adherence to a MD. Azores and Madeira had lower adherence to the MD than the rest of the country. Younger individuals in lower income categories (e.g., ORfinding it very difficult = 1.48; 95% CI 1.16–1.91) and with a lower educational level (e.g., OR0–4 years = 2.63; 95% CI 2.09–3.32) had higher odds of having a lower adherence to the MD. Portuguese adults have a high prevalence of low adherence to the MD, especially among those who are younger and have lower socioeconomic status. Public health policies to promote adherence to the MD should pay special attention to these groups. View Full-Text
Keywords: Mediterranean diet; socioeconomic; adults; southern Europe; Portugal; regional differences; age differences Mediterranean diet; socioeconomic; adults; southern Europe; Portugal; regional differences; age differences
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MDPI and ACS Style

Mendonça, N.; Gregório, M.J.; Salvador, C.; Henriques, A.R.; Canhão, H.; Rodrigues, A.M. Low Adherence to the Mediterranean Diet Is Associated with Poor Socioeconomic Status and Younger Age: A Cross-Sectional Analysis of the EpiDoC Cohort. Nutrients 2022, 14, 1239. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu14061239

AMA Style

Mendonça N, Gregório MJ, Salvador C, Henriques AR, Canhão H, Rodrigues AM. Low Adherence to the Mediterranean Diet Is Associated with Poor Socioeconomic Status and Younger Age: A Cross-Sectional Analysis of the EpiDoC Cohort. Nutrients. 2022; 14(6):1239. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu14061239

Chicago/Turabian Style

Mendonça, Nuno, Maria J. Gregório, Clara Salvador, Ana R. Henriques, Helena Canhão, and Ana M. Rodrigues. 2022. "Low Adherence to the Mediterranean Diet Is Associated with Poor Socioeconomic Status and Younger Age: A Cross-Sectional Analysis of the EpiDoC Cohort" Nutrients 14, no. 6: 1239. https://doi.org/10.3390/nu14061239

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