STUDY OBJECTIVE--The aim was to evaluate dietary intakes and their correlation to some risk factors for coronary heart disease. DESIGN--The study was a population based survey with random sample selection stratified by age and sex. PARTICIPANTS--352 adults living in a small town in Northern Italy took part in the study. Response rate was 46% among females and 48% among males. Refusal to take part was mainly due to the large number of tests involved. MEASUREMENTS AND MAIN RESULTS--Diets were high in protein (animal/vegetable ratio 1.7 in women and 1.4 in men) and in fat and low in carbohydrates. The hypercholesterolaemic and atherogenic potential of the diet, evaluated by the cholesterol/saturated fat index, was high in about 50% of the population. The thiamin and riboflavin intakes were lower than the Italian recommended allowances in more than 60% of the people tested, whereas the vitamin A intake was more than adequate in about 70%. A positive association was found in the younger groups (men and women 20-39 years old) between some nutrient components (energy, alcohol, total and saturated fats) and some blood lipids. In the older people blood lipids were correlated with body mass index. CONCLUSIONS--The overall data indicate that a correlation exists between dietary intake and some risk factors for coronary heart disease; dietary intervention, at least in young adults, is suggested.
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