Section 3
Chapter 2,733

Who complied with COMA 1984 dietary fat recommendations among a nationally representative sample of British adults in 1986-7 and what did they eat?

Pryer, J.; Brunner, E.; Elliott, P.; Nichols, R.; Dimond, H.; Marmot, M.

European Journal of Clinical Nutrition 49(10): 718-728


ISSN/ISBN: 0954-3007
PMID: 8536650
Accession: 002732189

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Objectives: To determine the proportion of the British adult population that appeared to achieve the Committee on Medical Aspects of Food Policy (COMA) 1984 nutritional recommendations, and to compare their dietary pattern, socioeconomic and behavioural characteristics with those of other British adults. Design: National representative dietary survey using 7-day weighed dietary records. Setting: Private households in Great Britain in 1986-7. Subjects: 1087 men and 1110 women aged 16-64 years. Main outcome measures: Food group and nutrient consumption, socioeconomic, demographic and behavioural characteristics. Results: 5.2% men and 7.4% women appeared to meet all three COMA dietary fat recommendations, termed here 'compliers', when data for all survey participants were analysed. Corresponding figures were 3.8% men and 4.7% women when 'low energy reporters' (LERs) were excluded, ie men (30%) and women (47%) with reported energy intakes lt 1.2 estimated basal metabolic rate. With the exclusion of LERs, 'compliers' appeared to meet the recommendations by substituting low-fat for high-fat dairy products, and poultry for meat and meat products. They also tended to report more high fibre bread and cereals. Compared with 'non-compliers', the diets of 'compliers' were higher in protein, carbohydrate, starch, sugar and fibre, and were more micronutrient-dense. A higher proportion of men in non-manual than in manual social classes were classified as 'compliers' (5.2% vs 2.4%, P lt 0.05). Amongst women, Black/Ethnic minority participants were more likely to be 'compliers' than Whites. Being a 'complier' was related to other indicators of health seeking behaviour (e.g. non-smoking, no or moderate alcohol intake, food supplement use). Conclusion: Few men and women appeared to comply with Government recommendations on dietary fat in 1986/87. The findings are relevant to the implementation of current healthy eating guidelines as a basis for prevention of coronary heart disease. Sponsorship: Department of Health.

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