Topical Area: Nutritional Epidemiology
Consumption of energy-dense meals from restaurants may increase the risk of cardiovascular disease. In the past 40 years, consumption of away-from-home meals has nearly doubled, and restaurants with more than 20 locations are now federally mandated to display the nutrition information on menus. As Americans continue to consume a large number of their daily meals from restaurants, it is important to evaluate the association between the use of restaurant-provided nutrition information and health outcomes. No study has reported such association in a representative sample of Americans. Therefore, the objective of this analysis was to evaluate the association between the use of nutrition information in restaurants and cholesterol levels in adults.
A cross-sectional analysis of NHANES 2013-2014 data was completed using responses to the question on the use of nutrition information in restaurants to make purchasing decisions. This was associated with the risk of high cholesterol (levels >200 mg/dL) by using multiple logistic regression and adjusting for medical conditions, energy intake, and weight history.
A total of 1,238 adults (18-65y) responded to the question about viewing nutrition information in restaurants; 43% reported using this information to make purchasing decisions. However, using such information was not associated with a lower risk of high cholesterol (OR: 1.014, 95% CI: 0.797, 1.290). Similar results were seen in the adjusted model (OR: 0.924, 95% CI 0.719, 1.187).
No significant associations were found between the use of nutrition information in restaurants to make purchasing decisions and a lower risk of high cholesterol. This could be explained by the possibility that individuals with high cholesterol are more aware of their eating patterns and use more than just nutrition information to make purchasing decisions to help lower their cholesterol. Longitudinal studies are needed to confirm these results.
Funding Sources : FIU Internal funds