Abstract P067: Association of Number of Eating Episodes per Day with Blood Pressure: INTERMAP Study
Background: Greater meal frequency per day may relate favorably to blood pressure (BP) levels of individuals.
Aims: Explore associations of BP with frequency of food intake and meal timing among American participants of the INTERMAP Study. Whether differential nutrient intakes are contributing to observed BP differences is also explored.
Methods: The INTERMAP Study is a cross-sectional epidemiologic investigation of 4,680 men and women ages 40–59 years in China, Japan, United Kingdom and United States (US). Data include findings from four 24-hour dietary recalls, two 24-hour urine collections, 8 BP measurements and health history questionnaires. Meals and snacks will be referred to as “eating episodes” (EP), where an eating episode is an intake of energy separated from the previous intake of food by a period of time.
Results: Among 2,195 US participants, mean number of EP was 5.8 (SD 1.7) and average energy/EP was 423.0 kcal (SD 160.6) per day. About 57% of participants had less than 6 EP per day and had significantly higher systolic BP (SBP) compared to 43% of participants having 6 or more EP per day (119.3 mmHg, SD 13.9 vs. 117.7 mmHg, SD 13.9 P=0.01). Mean energy/EP, adjusted for sex, age, population sample and body mass index (BMI), was significantly higher among those having less than 6 EP per day then those with 6 or more EP per day (P<0.0001). Association of average number of EP with SBP was consistently negative in linear regression models adjusted for energy, sex, age, BMI, special diet, physical activity, cigarette smoking, and family history of hypertension (b=−0.04, P=0.04).
Conclusions: Smaller more frequent intake of meals/snacks relates favorably to BP levels. Several mechanisms may be involved, e.g., improved glucose tolerance and insulin sensitivity, with spreading food intake throughout the day.
- © 2012 by American Heart Association, Inc.