, Volume 57, Issue 3, pp 589-597

Mass media information and adherence to Mediterranean diet: results from the Moli-sani study

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Abstract

Objective

To investigate the association between mass media information, dietary habits and risk factors for cardiovascular disease in an Italian adult population.

Methods

Subsample of 1,132 subjects (mean age 53 ± 10, 50% men) enrolled in the Moli-sani Project, a population-based cohort study. A specific questionnaire on exposure to information from various media sources was elaborated, validated, and administered. A mass media exposure score was obtained from principal component analysis of ten items of media exposure. Dietary habits were assessed based on eating patterns obtained from principal component analysis of 45 food groups derived from the EPIC food frequency questionnaire and by the Mediterranean score.

Results

In a multivariable general linear regression analysis including age, sex, social status, physical activity, C-reactive protein, total calories intake, three dietary patterns or Mediterranean score, higher media exposure was positively associated with adherence to a Mediterranean-like eating pattern (P = 0.0018) as well as to the Mediterranean score (P = 0.0005).

Conclusions

Exposure to mass media information is significantly associated with greater adherence to both Mediterranean diet and Mediterranean-like eating pattern, an association that public health strategies should take into account.

On behalf of the Moli-sani Project Investigators. Moli-sani Project Investigators are listed in the Appendix 1.