2020 Volume 66 Issue 1 Pages 32-40
Anemia is a risk factor for frailty. Although various factors can reduce the risk of anemia, information on dietary contributions is limited. This study aimed to evaluate the association between anemia and eating patterns in Japanese elderly. Our study included 6,864 elderly individuals, aged ≥65 y, whose data were obtained from the 2010-2015 National Health and Nutritional Survey, Japan. Anemia was defined as whole blood hemoglobin concentrations <13 g/dL in men, and <12 g/dL in women. We classified eating patterns into 33 food groups, using food items obtained from dietary records, and identified three dietary patterns using principal component analysis method. Participants were assigned and divided into quartiles according to pattern-specific factor scores. We calculated adjusted odds ratios (ORs) for anemia using multivariate logistic regression, and assigned the first quartile (minimum) as the reference. The overall prevalence of anemia was 17.1%. The meats and vegetables eating pattern was characterized by red meat and other vegetables, the Japanese eating pattern by rice and salted or pickled vegetables, and the fruits and vegetables eating pattern by fruits and green-yellow vegetables. Participants in the highest meats and vegetables eating pattern quartile had a 20% lower risk of anemia than those in the lowest quartile (OR 0.81; 95% confidence interval (CI) 0.66-1.00); the Japanese eating pattern participants had a 20% higher risk of anemia (OR 1.28; 95% CI 1.06-1.53). The fruits and vegetables eating pattern participants had no significant change in their risk of anemia. This study may indicate that consuming a high red meat diet prevents anemia in elderly Japanese individuals.