Online Program

Older worker nutrient intake and recommendation compliance

Wednesday, November 6, 2013 : 1:06 p.m. - 1:18 p.m.

Diana Kachan, PhD, Department of Public Health Sciences, University of Miami, Miller School of Medicine, Miami, FL
Stacey L. Tannenbaum, PhD, RD, LD/N, Sylvester Comprehensive Cancer Center, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Miami, FL
Kristopher L. Arheart, Ed.D., Department of Public Health Sciences, Division of Biostatistics, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Miami, FL
Lora E. Fleming, MD PhD, European Centre for Environment and Human Health, University of Exeter Medical School, Truro, United Kingdom
David J. Lee, PhD, Department of Public Health Sciences, University of Miami Miller School of Medicine, Miami, FL
Introduction: The prevalence of obesity/overweight among workers is increasing. As older individuals are remaining in the workforce longer, it is important to identify nutritional factors that could result in poor health outcomes. We examined nutrient intake and BMI of older workers compared to older non-workers.

Methods: Data from the 2005-2010 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey were pooled for individuals aged 65+ with employment status and 24-hour-dietary recall information (N=2,378). Means for nutrients were compared using unpaired t-tests. Compliance with Dietary Reference Intake (DRI) recommendations was assessed by calculating prevalences and 95% confidence intervals (95%CI), adjusting for sampling weights and design effects.

Results: The majority of workers (mean age: 69 years) and non-workers (72 years) were overweight or obese (92.4%; mean BMI: 35.9kg/m2[SE=1.4] vs. 93.35%; 36.7kg/m2[1.4], respectively). Workers relative to non-workers consumed less retinol (mean: 423.7mcg[105.9] vs. 471.3mcg[107.2]; p=0.005) and more vitamin E (10.7mg[1.1] vs. 9.6mg[1.2]; p=0.001), but had similarly high sugar (117.2g[13.4] vs. 112.3g[14.2]; p=0.12) and similarly low fiber (21.2g[2.3] vs. 20.1g[2.40]) intakes. There were small significant but not clinically relevant differences in the intake of fat, magnesium, zinc, copper, sodium, and potassium. Less than half of workers met the DRI for fiber (36.1%; 95%CI: 9.6-75.1), vitamin C (42.3%; 17.9-71.1), and calcium (40.5%; 15.8-71.7) which may lead to nutrient deficiencies.

Conclusion: Older workers and older non-workers generally had comparable diets/high BMI with inadequate overall nutrient intake, particularly for fiber, vitamin C, and calcium. Worksite health promotion should target older workers and community outreach can correct inadequacies for non-workers.

Learning Areas:

Chronic disease management and prevention
Occupational health and safety

Learning Objectives:
Compare the nutrient intake and proportion of overweight or obesity of older workers and older non-workers. List the nutrients that did not meet the Dietary Reference Intake levels. Identify the nutritional deficiencies that could result as a consequence of poor dietary intake in older workers.

Keyword(s): Workforce, Nutrition

Presenting author's disclosure statement:

Qualified on the content I am responsible for because: because I am a PhD student being trained by a group of occupational epidemiologists. I co-authored an article on “State Variations of Chronic Disease Risk Factors in Older Americans”, as well as presented on the topic of “Unintentional Injury Mortality Risk in US Worker” at the International Congress on Occupational Health. Besides occupational epidemiology, my other interests include mindfulness practices and research, project management, and software development.
Any relevant financial relationships? No

I agree to comply with the American Public Health Association Conflict of Interest and Commercial Support Guidelines, and to disclose to the participants any off-label or experimental uses of a commercial product or service discussed in my presentation.

Back to: 5142.0: Nutrition and Aging