Obstructive Sleep Apnea (OSA) is considered a public health problem and its prevalence is increasing at an epidemic rate. The aim of this study was to examine whether individual nutrients (macronutrients, antioxidant vitamins) rather than energy restriction may potentially affect OSA severity in a representative population of Cyprus.
A total sample of 303 adults (>18 years old) with Cypriot citizenship and permanently residing in Cyprus were randomly selected. Selected patients have completed the food frequency questionnaire, and a physical activity questionnaire and underwent a sleep study to assess OSA severity.
Overall, 303 patients were included in this study, 169 (55.8%) had mild OSA (apnea-hypopnea index-AHI 15). The mean age of all patients was 55.7 years old. Patients with moderate to severe OSA had significant higher BMI levels, higher consumption of calories, higher hip circumference, waist circumference, waist-hip ratio and neck circumference and higher consumption of folic acid compared with the patients with mild OSA (p<0.05).
The findings suggest that increased energy intake regardless diet macronutrient composition is positively associated with OSA severity whereas higher folic acid intake seems to have a protective role.