45-percent cutoff in solid fat, added sugar intake identifies low-quality diets
Use of the 45-percent cutoff point for the contribution of solid fat and added sugars (SoFAS) foods to total energy intake is helpful in identifying high-risk eating profile in a Brazilian population, according to a study.
“In recent decades, changes in the diet of Brazilians have been characterized by increased consumption of high energy-dense foods, rich in fat and sugar,” the authors said.
To assess diet quality based on the intake of foods with high content of SoFAS, the first Brazilian National Dietary Survey (2008–2009) was conducted. This nationwide representative cross-sectional study collected food records from 34,003 individuals aged ≥10 years.
The authors used a receiver-operating characteristic curve to determine the limit that would identify diets with high SoFAS content.
The 45-percent limit of total dietary energy provided by SoFAS was adopted to classify diets with excessive content. The SoFAS provided 53 percent of daily energy intake to adolescents, 49 percent to adults, and 48 percent to the elderly. Majority of the adolescents (64.7 percent), adults (59.1 percent), and the elderly (57.8 percent) had a high intake of SoFAS.
Higher income was associated with the increased contribution of SoFAS to daily energy intake in all age groups. In addition, individuals with high consumption of SoFAS had higher intakes of sugar-sweetened beverages, cookies and cakes, processed meats, chips, candy and chocolate, and sandwiches and snacks when compared with those who had moderate intake of SoFAS (<45 percent of daily energy).