What is a healthy Nordic diet? Foods and nutrients in the NORDIET study
AbstractBackground: A healthy Nordic diet (ND), a diet based on foods originating from the Nordic countries, improves blood lipid profile and insulin sensitivity and lowers blood pressure and body weight in hypercholesterolemic subjects. Objective: To describe and compare food and nutrient composition of the ND in relation to the intake of a Swedish reference population (SRP) and the recommended intake (RI) and average requirement (AR), as described by the Nordic nutrition recommendations (NNR). Design: The analyses were based on an estimate of actual food and nutrient intake of 44 men and women (mean age 53±8 years, BMI 26±3), representing an intervention arm receiving ND for 6 weeks. Results: The main difference between ND and SRP was the higher intake of plant foods, fish, egg and vegetable fat and a lower intake of meat products, dairy products, sweets and desserts and alcoholic beverages during ND (p<0.001 for all food groups). Intake of cereals and seeds was similar between ND and SRP (p>0.3). The relative intake of protein, fat and carbohydrates during ND was in accordance with RI. Intake of all vitamins and minerals was above AR, whereas sodium intake was below RI. Conclusions: When compared with the food intake of an SRP, ND is primarily a plant-based diet. ND represents a balanced food intake that meets the current RI and AR of NNR 2004 and has a dietary pattern that is associated with decreased morbidity and mortality.
Keywords: Nordic foods; nutrient intake; food intake; Swedish reference population; Nordic nutrition recommendations
(Published: 27 June 2012)
Citation: Food & Nutrition Research 2012. 56 18189 - http://dx.doi.org/10.3402/fnr.v56i0.18189
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Authors retain copyright of their work, with first publication rights granted to SNF Swedish Nutrition Foundation.