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Jornal de Pediatria

Print version ISSN 0021-7557On-line version ISSN 1678-4782


VITOLO, Márcia R.; CANAL, Queli; CAMPAGNOLO, Paula D. B.  and  GAMA, Cíntia M.. Factors associated with risk of low folate intake among adolescents. J. Pediatr. (Rio J.) [online]. 2006, vol.82, n.2, pp.121-126. ISSN 0021-7557.

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate factors associated with the risk of low folate intake among adolescents. METHODS: We employed cluster sampling, using a random selection of 40 representative census sectors and households within those sectors, including all individuals between 10 and 19 years of age. The weight, height and skin folds of subjects were measured and socioeconomic data on their families were collected. A 24-hour dietary recall and frequency questionnaire were used to estimate the quantity and frequency of folate intake. Folate consumption was quantified using Nutwin software. Risk of low folate intake was defined as Folate consumption below the estimated average requirement. The statistical analysis employed hierarchical logistic regression. RESULTS: A total of 722 adolescents were investigated and their mean folate intake was 145±117 µg. The frequency of subjects at risk of having a lower than recommended folate intake was 89%. Adolescents had a greater risk of inadequate folate intake if their body mass index was at or above the 85th percentile, their waist circumference was at or above the 80th percentile or they had a family history of cardiovascular disease. Adolescents who ate beans and dark green vegetables less than four times a week also exhibited an increased chance of having folate intake below recommended levels. CONCLUSIONS: These adolescents present a high risk of low folate intake and this risk is linked with increasing age, waist circumference above the 80th percentile and low frequency of beans and dark green vegetables consumption.

Keywords : Adolescent; folic acid; food habits; obesity.

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