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To investigate socio-economic differences in children’s diet, activity and inactivity and changes in these differences over 4 years during which new policies on food in schools were introduced.
Two cross-sectional surveys in which diet was assessed by FFQ and physical activity and inactivity were assessed by interviewer-administered questionnaire. Socio-economic status was assessed by the area-based Scottish Index of Multiple Deprivation.
Scotland, 2006 and 2010.
Children aged 3–17 years (n 1700 in 2006, n 1906 in 2010).
In both surveys there were significant linear associations between socio-economic deprivation and intakes of energy, non-milk extrinsic sugars (NMES) as a percentage of food energy, sugar-sweetened beverages, confectionery, crisps and savoury snacks and leisure-time screen use (all higher among children in more deprived areas), while intakes of fruit, fruit juice and vegetables showed the opposite trend. In 2010 children in more deprived areas engaged in more physical activity out of school than those in more affluent areas, but between 2006 and 2010 there was an overall reduction in physical activity out of school. There were also small but statistically significant overall reductions in intakes of confectionery, crisps and savoury snacks, energy and NMES and saturated fat as a percentage of food energy, but no statistically significant change in socio-economic gradients in diet or activity between the two surveys.
Interventions to improve diet and physical activity in children in Scotland need to be designed so as to be effective in all socio-economic groups.
To assess the relative validity of the latest version of the Scottish Collaborative Group (SCG) FFQ (version 6.6) in adults living in Scotland.
A cross-sectional validation study. Participants completed the self-administered, 169-item SCG FFQ followed by a 7 d, non-weighed food diary. Energy and energy-adjusted macronutrients and micronutrients were examined for relative validity through Spearman’s correlation, the percentage of classification into thirds of intake, Cohen’s weighted kappa (κw) and Bland–Altman analysis.
General population living in Scotland.
Ninety-six adults aged 18–65 years.
Spearman’s correlation coefficients ranged from 0·21 (retinol) to 0·71 (Mg). A median of 52 % of adults were correctly classified into thirds of intake (range: 42 % (PUFA, MUFA and Fe) to 64 % (percentage energy from carbohydrates)) and 8 % were grossly misclassified into opposite thirds of intake (range: 3 % (carbohydrates, percentage energy from carbohydrates) to 19 % (thiamin)). Values of κw ranged between 0·20 (PUFA, β-carotene) to 0·55 (percentage energy from carbohydrates). In the Bland–Altman analysis, the smallest limits of agreement, when expressed as a percentage of the mean intake from the FFQ and food diary, were seen for the main macronutrients carbohydrates, fat and protein.
As in the previous validation study more than 10 years ago, the FFQ gave higher estimates of energy and most nutrients than the food diary, but after adjustment for energy intake the FFQ could be used in place of non-weighed food diaries for most macronutrients and many micronutrients in large-scale epidemiological studies.
To assess the intake and sources of non-milk extrinsic sugars (NMES) and fat among children in Scotland in relation to socio-economic status, and to estimate the changes in diet required to achieve recommended levels of intake.
Cross-sectional survey with diet assessed by semi-quantitative FFQ.
Eighty postcode sectors across Scotland.
Children (n 1398) aged 3–17 years recruited from the Child Benefit register (76 % of those contacted).
The mean intake of NMES of 17·4 (95 % CI 17·0, 17·8) % food energy was considerably higher than the UK recommended population average of 11 % food energy. The mean intake of total fat of 32·9 (95 % CI 32·7, 33·2) % food energy met the recommended population average of no more than 35 % food energy, while the mean intake of SFA of 13·8 (95 % CI 13·7, 14·0) % food energy was above the recommended population average of no more than 11 % food energy. Despite clear socio-economic gradients in the mean daily consumption of many ‘healthy’ and ‘unhealthy’ food groups, socio-economic differences in NMES as a percentage of food energy were limited and there was no significant variation in the intake of total fat or SFA as a percentage of food energy with socio-economic status. Modelling of the data showed that removing sugar-sweetened soft drinks and increasing fruit and vegetable intake by 50 % would not restore the intake of NMES and SFA to recommended levels.
Major changes in the intake of many food groups will be required to bring the NMES and saturated fat intake in line with current dietary recommendations.
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