The Journal of Nutrition Health and Aging

, Volume 12, Issue 4, pp 239–243

Assessing the prevalence of malnutrition with the Mini Nutritional Assessment (MNA) in a nationally representative sample of elderly Taiwanese


DOI: 10.1007/BF02982628

Cite this article as:
Tsai, A.C., Ho, C.S. & Chang, M.C. J Nutr Health Aging (2008) 12: 239. doi:10.1007/BF02982628


Objective: The study was to determine whether the Mini Nutritional Assessment (MNA) could be used as a tool to effectively identify malnourished elderly in a non-Caucasian population.Design: The study was a part of a population-based multistage random sample survey.Setting: In-home face-to-face interviews.Participants: Randomly selected 1583 men and 1307 women, 65 years or older, in Taiwan.Measurements: Assessing nutritional risk status of participants with the Mini Nutritional Assessment.Results: The prevalence of malnutrition is 1.7% in elderly men and 2.4% in elderly women, 65 years or older. The proportion at risk of malnutrition is 13.1%.Conclusion: To the best of our knowledge, this is the first study to apply the MNA to estimate the prevalence of malnutrition in the elderly in a nationally representative sample. Results suggest that the MNA can identify malnourished elderly in a non-Caucasian population. However, it appears that the functionality of the instrument can be improved by adapting population-specific anthropometric cutoff standards.

Key words

Mini Nutritional Assessment elderly malnutrition nutritional risk Taiwan 

Copyright information

© Springer-Verlag France and Serdi Éditions 2008

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Human Nutrition Program, Department of Environmental Health Sciences, School of Public HealthUniversity of MichiganAnn Arbor
  2. 2.Graduate Institute of Healthcare AdministrationAsia UniversityWufeng, TaichungTaiwan
  3. 3.Dept of HealthBureau of Health PromotionTaichungTaiwan

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