Exploration of dietary pattern associations within a multi-ethnic society context has been limited. We aimed to describe dietary patterns of 5664 pregnant women from the Growing Up in New Zealand
study, and investigate associations between these patterns and maternal socio-demographic, place of birth, health and lifestyle factors. Participants completed a food frequency questionnaire prior to the birth of their child. Principal components analysis was used to extract dietary patterns and multivariable analyses used to determine associations. Four dietary components were extracted. Higher scores on, ‘Junk’ and ‘Traditional/White bread’, were associated with decreasing age, lower educational levels, being of Pacific or Māori ethnicity and smoking. Higher scores on, ‘Health conscious’ and ‘Fusion/Protein’, were associated with increasing age, better self-rated health, lower pre-pregnancy body mass index (BMI) and not smoking. Higher scores on ‘Junk’ and ‘Health conscious’ were associated with being born in New Zealand (NZ), whereas higher scores on ‘Fusion/Protein’ was associated with being born outside NZ and being of non-European ethnicity, particularly Asian. High scores on the ‘Health conscious’ dietary pattern showed the highest odds of adherence to the pregnancy dietary guidelines. In this cohort of pregnant women different dietary patterns were associated with migration, ethnicity, socio-demographic characteristics, health behaviors and adherence to dietary guidelines.
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