Obesity has increased by more than 20% in the past decade in the United States. Over half of US adults are overweight or obese.
In this study, researchers from Baltimore, Maryland, assessed the nutritional etiology of changes in body mass index (BMI), and waist circumference by dietary intake pattern.
|Annual change in waist circumference was greater in white-bread cluster.|
|American Journal of Clinical Nutrition|
The team hypothesized that a healthy dietary pattern would lead to smaller changes in BMI and waist circumference, than other dietary patterns.
The researchers included 459 healthy men and women participating in the ongoing Baltimore Longitudinal Study of Aging.
The participants' diet was assessed using 7-day dietary records. From these records, 41 food groups were created and entered into a cluster analysis.
The research team then identified 5 dietary patterns. These were healthy, white bread, alcohol, sweets, and meat and potatoes.
The researchers found that the mean annual change in BMI was 0.30 for subjects in the meat-and-potatoes cluster, and 0.05 for those in the healthy cluster.
Furthermore, the mean annual change in waist circumference was 3 times as greater for subjects in the white-bread cluster, than for those in the healthy cluster.
Dr Newby's team concluded, "Consuming a diet high in fruit, vegetables, reduced-fat dairy, and whole grains…was associated with smaller gains in BMI and waist circumference".
"Because foods are not consumed in isolation, dietary pattern research based on natural eating behavior may be useful in understanding dietary causes of obesity".