Public Health Nutrition

Nutrition and health

Association between body composition and conformity to the recommendations of Canada's Food Guide and the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet in peri-adolescence

Samantha Hajnaa1, Jian Liua1 c1, Paul J LeBlanca1, Brent E Faughta1, Anwar T Merchanta2, John Cairneya3a4 and John Haya1

a1 Department of Community Health Sciences, Brock University, 500 Glenridge Avenue, St. Catharines, Ontario, Canada, L2S 3A1

a2 Department of Epidemiology and Biostatistics, Arnold School of Public Health, University of South Carolina, Columbia, SC, USA

a3 Department of Family Medicine, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

a4 Department of Psychiatry & Behavioural Neurosciences, McMaster University, Hamilton, Ontario, Canada

Abstract

Objective The role of following the recommendations of Canada's Food Guide (CFG) and the Dietary Approaches to Stop Hypertension (DASH) diet on body composition in children is unknown. The present study assessed how conformity to the recommendations of these diets was associated with BMI, waist-to-height ratio (WHtR), waist-to-hip ratio (WHR), waist girth (WG), hip girth (HG) and risk of overweight in peri-adolescents.

Design CFG and DASH indices were derived from responses to a food questionnaire, with a higher index representing greater conformity to CFG and DASH diet recommendations. Body composition was assessed by trained research assistants.

Setting Schools within the Niagara region (Ontario, Canada).

Subjects Children (n 1570) aged 12·4 (sd 0·3) years.

Results After adjustment for age to peak height velocity and total physical activity, a higher CFG index was associated with lower WHtR (b = −0·001, 95 % CI −0·002, −0·0004), WHR (b = −0·001, 95 % CI −0·002, −0·001) and WG (b = −0·18, 95 % CI −0·30, −0·07) in girls. No associations were observed in boys. In contrast, a higher DASH index was associated with decreased body composition measures in both genders. Specifically, the DASH index was negatively associated with BMI (girls: b = −0·07, 95 % CI −0·10, −0·04; boys: b = −0·05, 95 % CI −0·08, −0·02), WHtR (girls: b = −0·001, 95 % CI −0·002, −0·001; boys: b = −0·001, 95 % CI −0·002, −0·0004), WHR (girls: b = −0·001, 95 % CI −0·002, −0·001; boys: b = −0·001, 95 % CI −0·001, −0·00004), WG (girls: b = −0·24, 95 % CI −0·31, −0·16; boys: b = −0·15, 95 % CI −0·24, −0·07) and HG (girls: b = −0·15, 95 % CI −0·23, −0·07; boys: b = −0·12, 95 % CI −0·19, −0·04). A higher DASH index was also associated with lower odds of overweight in girls (OR = 0·70, 95 % CI 0·56, 0·87) and boys (OR = 0·76, 95 % CI 0·62, 0·93).

Conclusions The DASH diet may prevent overweight in peri-adolescents.

(Received June 04 2011)

(Revised December 13 2011)

(Accepted February 24 2012)

(Online publication April 17 2012)

Correspondence

c1 Corresponding author: Email jliu@brocku.ca

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