International Journal of Public Health

, Volume 57, Issue 3, pp 589–597 | Cite as

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

  • Marialaura Bonaccio
  • Augusto Di Castelnuovo
  • Simona Costanzo
  • Francesca De Lucia
  • Marco Olivieri
  • Maria Benedetta Donati
  • Giovanni de Gaetano
  • Licia IacovielloEmail author
  • Americo Bonanni
Original Article



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


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.


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).


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.


Mass media exposure Mediterranean diet Cardiovascular risk factors 



The Moli-sani Project was partially supported by research Grants from Pfizer Foundation (Rome, Italy) and the Italian Ministry of University and Research (MIUR, Rome, Italy)—Programma Triennale di Ricerca, Decreto no.1588. Neither sponsor had any role in study design, collection, analysis, and interpretation of data; in the writing of the report; and in the decision to submit the article for publication.

Conflict of interest

All authors had full access to all of the data in the study and take responsibility for the integrity of the data and the accuracy of the data analysis. None of the authors had a personal or financial conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Swiss School of Public Health 2011

Authors and Affiliations

  • Marialaura Bonaccio
    • 1
  • Augusto Di Castelnuovo
    • 2
  • Simona Costanzo
    • 2
  • Francesca De Lucia
    • 1
  • Marco Olivieri
    • 2
  • Maria Benedetta Donati
    • 3
  • Giovanni de Gaetano
    • 3
  • Licia Iacoviello
    • 2
    Email author
  • Americo Bonanni
    • 1
  1. 1.Science Communication UnitFondazione di Ricerca e Cura “Giovanni Paolo II”CampobassoItaly
  2. 2.Laboratory of Genetic and Environmental Epidemiology, Research LaboratoriesFondazione di Ricerca e Cura “Giovanni Paolo II”CampobassoItaly
  3. 3.Research LaboratoriesFondazione di Ricerca e Cura “Giovanni Paolo II”CampobassoItaly

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