How well do Australian women comply with dietary guidelines?
OBJECTIVE: To investigate the proportion of middle-aged Australian women meeting national dietary recommendations and its variation according to selected sociodemographic and behavioural characteristics. DESIGN: This cross-sectional population-based study used a food-frequency questionnaire to investigate dietary patterns and compliance with 13 commonly promoted dietary guidelines among a cohort of middle-aged women participating in the Australian Longitudinal Study on Women’s Health. SETTING: Nation-wide community-based survey. SUBJECTS: A total of 10,561 women aged 50-55 years at the time of the survey in 2001. RESULTS: Only about one-third of women complied with more than half of the guidelines, and only two women in the entire sample met all 13 guidelines examined. While guidelines for meat/fish/poultry/eggs/nuts/legumes and ‘extra’ foods (e.g. ice cream, chocolate, cakes, potatoes, pizza, hamburgers and wine) were met well, large percentages of women (68-88%) did not meet guidelin