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Relationship between cigarette smoking and nutrient intakes and blood status indices of older people living in the UK: further analysis of data from the National Diet and Nutrition Survey of people aged 65 years and over, 1994/95

Published online by Cambridge University Press:  02 January 2007

CM Walmsley
MRC Human Nutrition Research, Downhams Lane, Milton Road, Cambridge CB4 1XJ, UK
CJ Bates*
MRC Human Nutrition Research, Downhams Lane, Milton Road, Cambridge CB4 1XJ, UK
A Prentice
MRC Human Nutrition Research, Downhams Lane, Milton Road, Cambridge CB4 1XJ, UK
TJ Cole
MRC Human Nutrition Research, Downhams Lane, Milton Road, Cambridge CB4 1XJ, UK
*Corresponding author: fax+44 1223 426617
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To examine the relationship between cigarette smoking and a range of nutrient intakes and blood status indices in older people.


National Diet and Nutrition Survey: cross-sectional survey of nationally representative sample of people aged 65 years and over.


Mainland Britain during 1994/95.


1191 people (619 male, 572 female) aged 65 years and over, of whom 920 were living in private households and 271 were living in institutions.


Cigarette smoking was inversely correlated with intakes of antioxidants and other micronutrients after adjustment for age, sex and domicile. Cigarette smoking was also inversely correlated with a number of antioxidant micronutrient status indices including plasma vitamin C and the carotenoids (but not vitamin E status indices), and with other micronutrient status indices, including plasma pyridoxal phosphate, red cell and serum folate, after adjustment for age, sex, domicile and the corresponding nutrient intake. Previous cigarette smoking or cigar/pipe smoking was not generally associated with lower nutrient intakes or status indices, however, both current and previous cigarette smoking was associated with increased concentrations of acute phase indicators. Further adjustment for total energy intake and/or sociodemographic, health and drug usage variables attenuated only a few of the associations observed.


Older people who smoke cigarettes are at increased risk of suboptimal antioxidant and other micronutrient intakes and status, but the lower intakes found in cigarette smokers only partly explain their reduced blood indices.

Research Article
Copyright © CABI Publishing 1999


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