dietary behaviour and to further examine the associations of different dietary compositions with selected characteristics. Design: Latent class analysis was applied to data from the recent cross-sectional National Family Health Survey that collected information on the intake frequency of selected foods. Different responses regarding intake frequency were condensed into a set of five meaningful latent clusters representing different dietary patterns and these clusters were then labelled based on the reported degree of diet mixing. Setting: Indian states. Subjects: In total, 90 180 women aged 15-49 years. Results: Three clusters were predominantly non-vegetarian and two were vegetarian. A very high or high mixed-diet pattern was observed particularly in the southern and a few north-eastern states. Many women in the very high mixed-diet cluster consumed mostly non-green/leafy vegetables on a daily basis, and fruits and other non-vegetarian diet on a weekly basis. In contrast, those in the low mixed-diet cluster consumed more than three-fifths of the major vegetarian diet ingredients alone on a daily basis. The affluent group that represented the low mixed-diet cluster were primarily vegetarians and those who represented the very high mixed-diet cluster were mostly non-vegetarians. The significant interrelationships of different characteristics highlight not only socio-economic, spatial and cultural disparities related to dietary practices, but also the substantial heterogeneity in diet mixing behaviour. Conclusions: The results of this study confirmed our hypothesis of heterogeneous dietary behaviour of Indian women and yielded useful policy-oriented results which might be difficult to establish otherwise.
Original languageEnglish
JournalEuropean Heart Journal
Journal publication date2002

ID: 443042