Low-income people are most vulnerable to food insecurity; many turn to community and/or charitable food programs to receive free or low-cost food. This needs assessment aims to collect information on the barriers to accessing food programs, the opportunities for improving food access, the barriers to eating fresh vegetables and fruit, and the opportunities to increasing their consumption among food-insecure people in Cobourg, Ontario.
We interviewed food program clients using structured individual interviews consisting of mostly opened-ended questions.
Food program clients identified barriers to using food programs as lack of transportation and the food programs having insufficient quantities of food or inconvenient operating hours. They also stated a lack of available vegetables and fruit at home, and income as barriers to eating more vegetables and fruit, but suggested a local fresh fruit and vegetable bulk-buying program called "Good Food Box" and community gardens as opportunities to help increase their vegetable and fruit intake.
Many of the barriers and opportunities identified can be addressed by working with community partners to help low-income individuals become more food secure.
Escherichia coli O157:H7 infections have traditionally been associated with animal products, but outbreaks associated with produce have been reported with increasing frequency. In fall 1996, a small cluster of E. coli O157:H7 infections was epidemiologically linked to a particular brand (brand A) of unpasteurized apple juice.
To define the extent of the outbreak, confirm the source, and determine how the apple juice became contaminated.
Descriptive epidemiologic study and traceback investigation.
Western United States and British Columbia, Canada.
Patients with E. coli O157:H7 infection who were exposed to brand A apple juice.
Clinical outcome and juice exposure histories of case-patients, pulsed-field gel electrophoresis of case and juice isolates, and juice production practices.
Seventy persons with E. coli O157:H7 infection and exposure to brand A unpasteurized apple juice were identified. Of these persons, 25 (36%) were hospitalized, 14 (20%) developed the hemolytic uremic syndrome, and 1 (1%) died. Recalled apple juice that was produced on 7 October 1996 grew E. coli O157:H7 with a pulsed-field gel electrophoresis pattern indistinguishable from that of case isolates. Apple juice produced on 7 October 1996 accounted for almost all of the cases, and the source of contamination was suspected to be incoming apples. Three lots of apples could explain contamination of the juice: Two lots originated from an orchard frequented by deer that were subsequently shown to carry E. coli O157:H7, and one lot contained decayed apples that had been waxed.
Standard procedures at a state-of-the-art plant that produced unpasteurized juices were inadequate to eliminate contamination with E. coli O157:H7. This outbreak demonstrated that unpasteurized juices must be considered a potentially hazardous food and led to widespread changes in the fresh juice industry.
Exposure to polychlorinated biphenyls and organochlorine pesticides through traditional food resources was examined for Arctic Indigenous women living in two cultural and environmental areas of the Canadian Arctic--one community representing Baffin Island Inuit in eastern Arctic and two communities representing Sahtú Dene/Métis in western Arctic. Polychlorinated biphenyls, toxaphene, chlorobenzenes, hexachlorocyclohexanes, dichlorodiphenyltrichloroethane, chlordane-related compounds and dieldrin were determined in local food resources as normally prepared and eaten. Quantified dietary recalls taken seasonally reflected normal consumption patterns of these food resources by women in three age groups: 20-40 y, 41-60 y and > or = 61 y. There was wide variation of intake of all organochlorine contaminants in both areas and among age groups for the Sahtú. Fifty percent of the intake recalls collected from the Baffin Inuit exceeded the acceptable daily intake for chlordane-related compounds and toxaphene, and a substantial percentage of the intake records for dieldrin and polychlorinated biphenyls exceeded the acceptable or tolerable daily intake levels. Primary contributing foods to organochlorine contaminants intake for the Baffin Inuit were meat and blubber of ringed seal, blubber of walrus and mattak and blubber of narwal. Important foods contributing organochlorine contaminant to the Sahtú Dene/Métis were caribou, whitefish, inconnu, trout and duck. The superior nutritional benefits and potential health risks of traditional food items are reviewed, as are implications for monitoring organochlorine contaminant contents of food, clinical symptoms and food use.
Few studies exist on the validity of food frequency questionnaires (FFQs) administered to elderly people. The aim of this study was to assess the validity of a short FFQ on present dietary intake, developed specially for the AGES-Reykjavik Study, which includes 5,764 elderly individuals. Assessing the validity of FFQs is essential before they are used in studies on diet-related disease risk and health outcomes.
128 healthy elderly participants (74 y ± 5.7; 58.6% female) answered the AGES-FFQ, and subsequently filled out a 3-day weighed food record. Validity of the AGES-FFQ was assessed by comparing its answers to the dietary data obtained from the weighed food records, using Spearman's rank correlation, Chi-Square/Kendall's tau, and a Jonckheere-Terpstra test for trend.
For men a correlation = 0.4 was found for potatoes, fresh fruits, oatmeal/muesli, cakes/cookies, candy, dairy products, milk, pure fruit juice, cod liver oil, coffee, tea and sugar in coffee/tea (r = 0.40-0.71). A lower, but acceptable, correlation was also found for raw vegetables (r = 0.33). The highest correlation for women was found for consumption of rye bread, oatmeal/muesli, raw vegetables, candy, dairy products, milk, pure fruit juice, cod liver oil, coffee and tea (r = 0.40-0.61). An acceptable correlation was also found for fish topping/salad, fresh fruit, blood/liver sausage, whole-wheat bread, and sugar in coffee/tea (r = 0.28-0.37). Questions on meat/fish meals, cooked vegetables and soft drinks did not show a significant correlation to the reference method. Pearson Chi-Square and Kendall's tau showed similar results, as did the Jonckheere-Terpstra trend test.
A majority of the questions in the AGES-FFQ had an acceptable correlation and may be used to rank individuals according to their level of intake of several important foods/food groups. The AGES-FFQ on present diet may therefore be used to study the relationship between consumption of several specific foods/food groups and various health-related endpoints gathered in the AGES-Reykjavik Study.
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Most studies that link neighbourhoods to disease outcomes have represented neighbourhoods as area-level socioeconomic status. Where objective contextual attributes of urban environments have been measured, few studies of food availability have evaluated mortality as an outcome. We sought to estimate associations between the availability of fast-food restaurants (FFR), fruit and vegetable stores (FVS), and cardiovascular mortality in an urban area. Food business data were extracted from a validated commercial database containing all businesses and services in the Montréal Census Metropolitan Area (MCMA). Mortality data (1999-2003) were obtained for the MCMA (3.4 million residents). Directly standardised mortality rates for cardiovascular deaths (n = 30,388) and non-cardiovascular deaths (all causes - cardiovascular deaths) (n = 91,132) and FFR and FVS densities (n/km²) were analysed for 845 census tracts. Generalised additive models and generalised linear models were used to analyse food source-mortality relationships. FVS density was not associated with cardiovascular or non-cardiovascular mortality (relative risk (RR) = 1.02, 95% confidence interval (CI): 0.76, 1.36, and RR = 1.14, 95% CI: 0.87, 1.50, respectively). Higher FFR density was associated with mortality in bivariate and multivariable analyses. Relative risks of death (95% CI) per 10% increase in FFR density were similar for both cardiovascular and non-cardiovascular mortality: 1.39 (1.19, 1.63) and 1.36 (1.18, 1.57), respectively, accounting for socio-demographic covariates. FFR density is associated with cardiovascular mortality but this relationship is no different in magnitude than that for non-cardiovascular mortality. These results together with null associations between FVS density and mortality do not support a major role for food source availability in cardiovascular outcomes.
Diet is recognised as one modifiable lifestyle factor for ischaemic heart disease (IHD). We aimed at investigating the associations between adherence to the Danish Food-Based Dietary Guidelines (FBDG) indicated by a Dietary Quality Index (DQI) and selected cardiometabolic risk factors in a cross-sectional study with 219 Danish adult participants (59 %women; age 31-65years) with a minimum of one self-rated risk marker of IHD. Information regarding diet was obtained using web-based dietary assessment software and adherence to the Danish FBDG was expressed by a DQI calculated from 5 food and nutrient indicators (whole grain, fish, fruit and vegetables, energy from saturated fat and from added sugar). Background information, blood samples and anthropometrics were collected and blood pressure was measured. Linear regression analyses were used to evaluate the association between DQI and cardiometabolic risk factors. DQI was inversely associated with LDL:HDL ratio and TAG (-0·089 per unit; 95 % CI -0·177, -0·002 and -5 % per unit; 95 % CI -9, 0, respectively) and positively associated with HDL-cholesterol (0·047 mmol/l per unit; 95 % CI 0·007, 0·088). For men, DQI was inversely associated with BMI (-3 %per unit; 95 % CI -5, -1), trunk fat (-1 % per unit; 95 % CI -2, -1), high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (-30 % per unit; 95 % CI -41, -16 %), HbA1c (-0·09 % per unit; 95 % CI -0·14, -0·04), insulin (-13 % per unit; 95 % CI -19, -7) and homoeostatic model assessment-insulin resistance (-14 % per unit; 95 % CI -21, -7). In women, DQI was positively associated with systolic blood pressure (2·6 mmHg per unit; 95 % CI 0·6, 4·6). In conclusion, higher adherence to the current Danish FBDG was associated with a more beneficial cardiometabolic risk profile in a Danish adult population with a minimum of one self-rated risk factor for IHD.
Dietary quality in relation to bone health has been analysed in relatively few studies. The current study aimed to assess the association of the Baltic Sea diet (BSD) and the Mediterranean diet (MD) with bone mineral density (BMD) among elderly women.
Lumbar, femoral and total body BMD were measured by dual-energy X-ray absorptiometry at baseline and year 3. Dietary intake was measured by 3 d food record at baseline. BSD and MD scores were calculated from food and alcohol consumption and nutrient intake. Information on lifestyle, diseases and medications was collected by questionnaires. Longitudinal associations of BSD and MD scores with BMD were analysed using linear mixed models.
Interventional prospective Kuopio Osteoporosis Risk Factor and Fracture Prevention study including women aged 65-71 years and residing in Kuopio province, Finland.
Women (n 554) with mean age of 67·9 (sd 1·9) years and mean BMI of 28·8 (sd 4·7) kg/m2.
Higher BSD scores were associated with higher intakes of fruit and berries, vegetables, fish and low-fat dairy products, and lower intake of sausage. Higher MD scores were associated with higher consumption of fruit and berries and vegetables. BSD and MD scores were associated with higher PUFA:SFA and higher fibre intake. Femoral, lumbar or total body BMD was not significantly different among the quartiles of BSD or MD score.
The lack of associations suggest that Baltic Sea and Mediterranean dietary patterns may not adequately reflect dietary factors relevant to bone health.
Starch in white wheat bread (WB) induces high postprandial glucose and insulin responses. For rye bread (RB), the glucose response is similar, whereas the insulin response is lower. In vitro studies suggest that polyphenol-rich berries may reduce digestion and absorption of starch and thereby suppress postprandial glycemia, but the evidence in humans is limited. We investigated the effects of berries consumed with WB or RB on postprandial glucose and insulin responses. Healthy females (n = 13-20) participated in 3 randomized, controlled, crossover, 2-h meal studies. They consumed WB or RB, both equal to 50 g available starch, with 150 g whole-berry purée or the same amount of bread without berries as reference. In study 1, WB was served with strawberries, bilberries, or lingonberries and in study 2 with raspberries, cloudberries, or chokeberries. In study 3, WB or RB was served with a mixture of berries consisting of equal amounts of strawberries, bilberries, cranberries, and blackcurrants. Strawberries, bilberries, lingonberries, and chokeberries consumed with WB and the berry mixture consumed with WB or RB significantly reduced the postprandial insulin response. Only strawberries (36%) and the berry mixture (with WB, 38%; with RB, 19%) significantly improved the glycemic profile of the breads. These results suggest than when WB is consumed with berries, less insulin is needed for maintenance of normal or slightly improved postprandial glucose metabolism. The lower insulin response to RB compared with WB can also be further reduced by berries.
According to results from the 2004 Canadian Community Health Survey-Nutrition, total beverage consumption among adults declined steadily with age. This reflects drops in the percentage of adults consuming most beverages and in the amounts consumed. While water was the beverage consumed most frequently and in the greatest quantity by adults, for many of them, coffee ranked second. Largely as a result of drinking coffee, more than 20% of men and 15% of women aged 31 to 70 exceeded the recommended maximum of 400 milligrams of caffeine per day. About 20% of men aged 19 to 70 consumed more than two alcoholic drinks a day. Owing to declines in the consumption of soft drinks and alcohol, the contribution of beverages to adults' total calorie intake falls at older ages. Regardless of age, men were generally more likely than women to report drinking most beverages, and those who did, drank more. There were, however, a few exceptions, with higher percentages of women than men reporting that they drank water and tea.