Nut consumptions as a marker of higher diet quality in a mediterranean population at high cardiovascular risk

Maria Del Mar Bibiloni, Alicia Julibert, Cristina Bouzas, Miguel A. Martínez-González, Dolores Corella, Jordi Salas-Salvadó, M. Dolors Zomeño, Jesús Vioque, Dora Romaguera, J. Alfredo Martínez, Julia Wärnberg, José López-Miranda, Ramón Estruch, Aurora Bueno-Cavanillas, Fernando Arós, Francisco Tinahones, Lluis Serra-Majem, Vicente Martín, José Lapetra, Clotilde VázquezXavier Pintó, Josep Vidal, Lidia Daimiel, Miguel Delgado-Rodríguez, Pilar Matía, Emilio Ros, Rebeca Fernández-Carrión, Antonio Garcia-Rios, M. Angeles Zulet, Domingo Orozco-Beltrán, Helmut Schröder, Montserrat Fitó, Mónica Bulló, Josep Basora, Juan Carlos Cenoz, Javier Diez-Espino, Estefanía Toledo, Josep A. Tur

Research output: Indexed journal article Articlepeer-review

10 Citations (Scopus)


Background: Nut consumption has been associated with improved nutrient adequacy and diet quality in healthy adult populations but this association has never been explored in individuals at high cardiovascular risk. Objective: to assess the associations between consumption of nuts and nutrient adequacy and diet quality in a Mediterranean population at high cardiovascular risk. Design: baseline assessment of nutritional adequacy in participants (n = 6060, men and women, with ages 55-75 years old, with overweight/obesity and metabolic syndrome) in the PREDIMED-PLUS primary cardiovascular prevention randomized trial. Methods: nut intake was assessed using a validated food frequency questionnaire. Participants who reported consuming zero quantity of nuts were classified as ‘non-nut consumers’. ‘Nut consumers’ were participants who reported consuming any quantity of nuts. Nineteen micronutrients were examined (vitamins B1, B2, B3, B6, B12, A, C, D, E and folic acid; Ca, K, P, Mg, Fe, Se, Cr, Zn, and iodine). The proportion of micronutrient inadequacy was estimated using the estimated average requirements (EAR) or adequate intake (AI) cut-points. Diet quality was also assessed using a 17-item Mediterranean dietary questionnaire (Mediterranean diet score, MDS), a carbohydrate quality index (CQI) and a fat quality index (FQI). Results: eighty-two percent of participants were nut consumers (median of nut consumption 12.6 g/day; interquartile range: 6.0-25.2). Nut consumers were less likely to be below the EAR for vitamins A, B1, B2, B6, C, D, E, folic acid, and Ca, Mg, Se and Zn than non-nut consumers. Nut consumers were also more likely to be above the AI for K and Cr than non-nut consumers. Nut consumers had lower prevalence of inadequate micronutrient intakes, but also higher CQI, higher FQI, and better scores of adherence to the Mediterranean diet (Mediterranean diet score, MDS). Conclusions: nut consumers had better nutrient adequacy, diet quality, and adherence to the MedDiet than those non-nut consumers.

Original languageEnglish
Article number754
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2019


  • Cardiovascular risk disease
  • Diet quality
  • Mediterranean diet
  • Nut consumption
  • Nutrient adequacy


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