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Comparative whole-grain intake of British adults in 1986-7 and 2000-1

Lookup NU author(s): Dr Angela Jones, Emeritus Professor Chris SealORCiD


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Epidemiological evidence suggests that higher consumption of whole-grain foods can significantly reduce the risk of chronic diseases such as CVD, type 2 diabetes and some cancers. The present study compares whole-grain intake of 2086 adults aged 16-64 years from the 1986-7 Dietary and Nutritional Survey of British Adults with that of 1692 adults aged 19-64 years from the 2000-1 National Diet and Nutrition Survey. For each survey, whole-grain intake was estimated from consumption of all foods containing ≥10% whole-grain content (as DM/fresh weight of food) from 7 d weighed dietary records. In 1986-7, median whole-grain intake was 16 (interquartile range 0-45) g/d v. 14 (interquartile range 0-36) g/d in 2000-1 (P<0.001). In 1986-7, 77% of adults had less than three 16 g amounts of whole-grain intake/d; 25% reported no whole-grain intake. In 2000-1, corresponding percentages were 84 and 29 %, respectively. Foods with <51% whole-grain content provided 18% of whole-grain intake in 1986-7 v. 27% in 2000-1 (P<0.001). In both surveys, whole-grain intake was significantly lower among adults with a manual v. non-manual occupation (indicative of lower socio-economic status) and among smokers v. non-smokers, independent of occupational social class. In 1986-7, whole-grain breakfast cereals and wholemeal bread contributed 28 and 48% of whole-grain intake, respectively, v. 45 and 31% in 2000-1. At each time, one-third of adults consumed neither of these two largest contributors to whole-grain intak. Findings from the present study suggest that whole-grain intake of British adults was low in 1986-7 and became even lower over the subsequent decade. © The Authors 2007.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Thane CW, Jones AR, Stephen AM, Seal CJ, Jebb SA

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: British Journal of Nutrition

Year: 2007

Volume: 97

Issue: 5

Pages: 987-992

Print publication date: 01/05/2007

ISSN (print): 0007-1145

ISSN (electronic): 1475-2662

Publisher: Cambridge University Press


DOI: 10.1017/S0007114507659078

PubMed id: 17381971


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Funder referenceFunder name
MC_U105960384Medical Research Council