Vol. 27, No. 2, 2009
Issue release date: March 2009
Free Access
Dement Geriatr Cogn Disord 2009;27:147–154
(DOI:10.1159/000199235)
Original Research Article
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Education Attenuates the Association between Dietary Patterns and Cognition

Akbaraly T.N.a · Singh-Manoux A.a–c · Marmot M.G.a · Brunner E.J.a
aDepartment of Epidemiology and Public Health, University College London, London, UK; bINSERM U687-IFR69 and cCentre de Gérontologie, Hôpital Ste Périne, AP-HP, Paris, France
email Corresponding Author


 goto top of outline Key Words

  • Nutrition
  • Cognitive functions
  • Population-based study
  • Education

 goto top of outline Abstract

Background/Aims: Various foods have been shown to be associated with cognitive outcomes. As individual food items are not consumed in isolation, we examined the association between dietary patternsand cognitive function, with special attention to the role of education in this association. Methods: Analyses were carried out on 4,693 stroke-free white European participants of the Whitehall II study. Two dietary patterns were determined using principal component analysis: a ‘whole food’ and a ‘processed food’ pattern. Cognitive function was assessed using a battery of 5 tests. Results: After adjustment for demographic, behavioral and health measures, higher intake of ‘whole food’ diet was associated with lower and high consumption of ‘processed food’ with higher odds of cognitive deficit. However, adjustment for education significantly attenuated most of these associations. Conclusions: Education, through its role as a powerful confounder, shapes the relationship between dietary patterns and cognitive deficit in a healthy middle-aged UK cohort.

Copyright © 2009 S. Karger AG, Basel


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 goto top of outline Author Contacts

Tasnime N. Akbaraly
Department of Epidemiology and Public Health
1–19 Torrington Place, University College London
London WC1E 6BT (UK)
Tel. +44 20 7679 1908, Fax +44 20 7419 6732, E-Mail tasnime.akbaraly@inserm.fr


 goto top of outline Article Information

Accepted: November 25, 2008
Published online: February 2, 2009
Number of Print Pages : 8
Number of Figures : 0, Number of Tables : 4, Number of References : 51


 goto top of outline Publication Details

Dementia and Geriatric Cognitive Disorders

Vol. 27, No. 2, Year 2009 (Cover Date: March 2009)

Journal Editor: Chan-Palay V. (New York, N.Y.)
ISSN: 1420-8008 (Print), eISSN: 1421-9824 (Online)

For additional information: http://www.karger.com/DEM


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