Carbohydrate quality may play a key role in cardiometabolic health and disease risk. This study aimed to assess the dietary carbohydrate quality of the free-living middle-aged and older adults in Singapore, and its association with overall diet quality and cardiometabolic health.
This cross-sectional study examined the diet and cardiometabolic disease risk indicators of middle-aged and older adults in Singapore (n = 104). Dietary carbohydrate quality was assessed as the pass and fail rate of the population to four measures of carbohydrate quality: (i) dietary fiber recommended daily allowance (RDA), (ii) whole-grain recommendation, (iii) free sugar recommendation, and (iv) carbohydrate metrics. The association between each carbohydrate quality measure and diet quality, as well as cardiometabolic health, was assessed. Except for free sugar recommendation, the carbohydrate quality of the population was found to be poor with a low adherence (20-36%) to three measures. Subjects meeting these measures had generally higher intakes of fiber, protein, and most micronutrients compared with subjects who failed. Meeting different variants of the carbohydrate metrics was associated with 60% lower odds of pre-hypertensive blood pressure (p = 0.037; p = 0.047), and meeting the dietary fiber RDA was associated with lower waist circumference (p = 0.021).
An improvement in carbohydrate quality is warranted among free-living middle-aged and older adults in Singapore. Not all measures of carbohydrate quality were equally effective in preserving overall diet quality; the carbohydrate metrics and dietary fiber RDA can be identified as effective measures in relation to cardiometabolic disease risk. CLINICAL TRIAL REGISTRATION: NCT03554954, 13 Sept. 2018.

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