Associations between dietary habits and risk factors for cardiovascular diseases in a Hong Kong Chinese working population--the "Better Health for Better Hong Kong" (BHBHK) health promotion campaign.Asia Pac J Clin Nutr. 2007; 16(4):757-65.AP
Diet and nutritional status have been shown to play pivotal roles in the occurrence of many chronic diseases. In this study, we examined the patterns of dietary habits and their relationships with risk factors for cardiovascular and chronic diseases in Hong Kong working populations. In April 2000, a 5-year territory-wide health promotion campaign supported by the Li Ka Shing Foundation was launched in Hong Kong by the Health InfoWorld of Hospital Authority. Between July 2000 and March 2002, 4841 Chinese subjects [2375 (49.1%) men and 2466 (50.9%) women, mean age: 42.4 +/- 8.9 years (median: 43.0 years, range: 17-83 years)] from the general working class were recruited. Subjects were randomly selected using computer generated codes according to the distribution of occupational groups. A dietary questionnaire was used to assess 6 core dietary habits: daily fruit intake, vegetable intake, fluid intake, sugary drinks, regularity of daily meals and number of dining out each day. Overall, men had a worse cardiovascular risk profile and less desirable dietary habits than women. Those who had more unhealthy dietary habits were more likely to be obese and current smokers. Using logistic regression analysis with the dietary habits as independent variables, we found that obesity, smoking and constipation were independently associated with various unhealthy dietary patterns. In conclusion, there were close associations between dietary habits and risk factors for cardiovascular diseases in Hong Kong. More effective community education about healthy lifestyle is required in Hong Kong.