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Using exploratory factor analysis of FFQ data to identify dietary patterns among Yup'ik people

  • Tove K Ryman (a1), Melissa A Austin (a1), Scarlett Hopkins (a2), Jacques Philip (a2), Diane O'Brien (a2), Kenneth Thummel (a3) and Bert B Boyer (a2)...
Abstract
Objective

An FFQ developed by the Center for Alaska Native Health Research for studies in Yup'ik people includes market foods and subsistence foods such as moose, seal, waterfowl and salmon that may be related to disease risk. Because the FFQ contains >100 food items, we sought to characterize dietary patterns more simply for use in ongoing pharmacogenomics studies.

Design

Exploratory factor analysis was used to derive a small number of ‘factors’ that explain a substantial amount of the variation in the Yup'ik diet. We estimated factor scores and measured associations with demographic characteristics and biomarkers.

Setting

South-west Alaska, USA.

Subjects

Yup'ik people (n 358) aged ≥18 years.

Results

We identified three factors that each accounted for ≥10 % of the common variance: the first characterized by ‘processed foods’ (e.g. salty snacks, sweetened cereals); the second by ‘fruits and vegetables’ (e.g. fresh citrus, potato salad); and the third by ‘subsistence foods’ (seal or walrus soup, non-oily fish). Participants from coastal communities had higher values for the ‘subsistence’ factor, whereas participants from inland communities had higher values for the ‘fruits and vegetables’ factor. A biomarker of marine intake, δ 15N, was correlated with the ‘subsistence’ factor, whereas a biomarker of corn- and sugarcane-based market food intake, δ 13C, was correlated with ‘processed foods’.

Conclusions

The exploratory factor analysis identified three factors that appeared to reflect dietary patterns among Yup'ik based on associations with participant characteristics and biomarkers. These factors will be useful for chronic disease studies in this population.

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Copyright
Corresponding author
*Corresponding author: Email maustin@u.washington.edu
References
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Public Health Nutrition
  • ISSN: 1368-9800
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