Greater adherence to a Mediterranean dietary pattern is associated with improved plasma lipid profile: the Aragon Health Workers Study cohort

Jose L. Penalvo, Belen Oliva, Mercedes Sotos-Prieto, Irina Uzhova, Belen Moreno-Franco, Montserrat Leon-Latre, Jose Maria Ordovas

    Research output: Contribution to journalA1: Web of Science-articlepeer-review


    Introduction and objectives: There is wide recognition of the importance of healthy eating in cardiovascular health promotion. The purpose of this study was to identify the main dietary patterns among a Spanish population, and to determine their relationship with plasma lipid profiles.

    Methods: A cross-sectional analysis was conducted of data from 1290 participants of the Aragon Workers Health Study cohort. Standardized protocols were used to collect clinical and biochemistry data. Diet was assessed through a food frequency questionnaire, quantifying habitual intake over the past 12 months. The main dietary patterns were identified by factor analysis. The association between adherence to dietary patterns and plasma lipid levels was assessed by linear and logistic regression.

    Results: Two dietary patterns were identified: a Mediterranean dietary pattern, high in vegetables, fruits, fish, white meat, nuts, and olive oil, and a Western dietary pattern, high in red meat, fast food, dairy, and cereals. Compared with the participants in the lowest quintile of adherence to the Western dietary pattern, those in the highest quintile had 4.6 mg/dL lower high-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels (P <.001), 8 mg/dL lower apolipoprotein A1 levels (P = .005) and a greater risk of having decreased high-density lipoprotein cholesterol (odds ratio = 3.19; 95% confidence interval, 1.36-7.5; P-trend = .03). Participants adhering to the Mediterranean dietary pattern had 3.3 mg/dL higher high-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels (P <.001), and a ratio of triglycerides to high-density lipoprotein cholesterol that was 0.43 times lower (P = .043).

    Conclusions: Adherence to the Mediterranean dietary pattern is associated with improved lipid profile compared with a Western dietary pattern, which was associated with a lower odds of optimal high-density lipoprotein cholesterol levels in this population. (C) 2014 Sociedad Espanola de Cardiologia. Published by Elsevier Espana, S.L.U. All rights reserved.

    Original languageEnglish
    JournalRevista Española de Cardiología
    Issue number4
    Pages (from-to)290-297
    Number of pages8
    Publication statusPublished - 2015


    • Mediterranean diet
    • Dietary pattern
    • Factor analysis
    • Diet score
    • Plasma lipids
    • WOMEN
    • MEN


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