Are prevailing patterns of diet behavior in a population, assessed using factor or cluster analysis, related to risk of type 2 diabetes?
ConclusionLimited and inconsistent evidence from epidemiological studies indicates that in adults, dietary patterns derived using factor or cluster analysis, characterized by vegetables, fruits and low-fat dairy products tend to have an association with decreased risk of type 2 diabetes (T2D) and those patterns characterized by red meat, sugar-sweetened foods and drinks, French fries, refined grains and high-fat dairy products tended to show an increased association for risk of T2D. Among studies, there was substantial variation in food group components and not all studies with similar patterns showed significant association.
- Cluster and factor analyses are data-driven approaches that describe the dietary patterns consumed by the study population. High variability in the studies included in this review, including populations, case number, sample size, dietary assessment techniques, methods used to define and retain factors and clusters, confounders considered and the statistical analysis employed, made comparisons among studies challenging.
- Studies focused on intermediate outcomes were too few and too diverse in methodology to draw a conclusion.
- Evaluate and standardize methods used to assess, organize, aggregate and adjust food variables to facilitate interpretation of findings across studies
- Additional research is needed to examine if and how gender, age, socioeconomic status and ethnicity might influence the relationship between dietary patterns and risk for T2D
- Consider important confounders that may modify or explain the association between dietary intake and T2D, for example, weight change.
What is the evidence that supports this conclusion? For more information, click on the Evidence Summary link below.
Search Plan and Results
What were the search parameters and selection criteria used to identify literature to answer this question? For more information, click on the Search Plan and Results link below.