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Search Plan and Results


Are prevailing patterns of diet behavior in a population, assessed using factor or cluster analysis, related to body weight or risk of obesity?

What is the relationship between adherence to dietary guidelines and recommendations or specific dietary patterns, assessed using reduced rank regression analysis, and measures of body weight or obesity?

Date Searched

January 2012; updated August 2012

Inclusion Criteria

  • Human subjects
  • Subject populations from countries with high or very high human development, according to the Human Development Index[1]
  • Children, adolescents and adults aged two years and older
  • Subjects who were healthy or at elevated chronic disease risk
  • Randomized or non-randomized controlled trial with at least 30 subjects per study arm and a follow-up rate of at least 80%, or a prospective cohort study.
  • A description of the dietary pattern(s) consumed by subjects, which for this review were defined as:
    • The quantities, proportions, variety or combination of different foods, drinks, and nutrients (when available) in diets
    • The frequency with which they are habitually consumed.
In addition, articles were included if they were published in English in a peer-reviewed journal between January 1980 and August 2013 (see Appendices F to H for the date of the last search update for each question). If an author is included on more than one primary research article that is similar in content, the paper with the most pertinent data/endpoints was included. If data/endpoints from both papers are appropriate, it was made clear that results are from the same intervention.

Exclusion Criteria

  • Animals and in vitro models
  • Subject populations from countries with medium or low human development, according to the Human Development Index
  • Children under the age of two years
  • Subjects who were hospitalized, diagnosed with disease or receiving medical treatment
  • Low-calorie intervention (defined as less than 1, 600kcal per day for women and less than 2, 000kcal per day for men)
  • Systematic review, meta-analysis, narrative review, before-and-after studies, cross-sectional studies or case-control studies.
Articles were excluded if they were not published in English, or were published before January 1980. Articles, abstracts and presentations not published in peer-reviewed journals (e.g., websites, magazine articles, Federal reports) were also excluded. Finally, if an author was included on more than one review article or primary research article that is similar in content, the paper with the most pertinent data/endpoints was included, and others were excluded.

Search Terms & Electronic Databases Used


Search Terms

(“Principal component analysis”[tiab] OR “Factor analysis”[tiab] OR “Cluster analysis”[tiab] OR “rank regression”[tiab] OR “Discriminant analysis”[tiab] OR "Cluster Analysis"[Mesh] OR "Factor Analysis, Statistical"[Mesh] OR "Principal Component Analysis"[Mesh] OR "Discriminant Analysis"[Mesh] OR "Regression Analysis"[Mesh]) AND ("Body Weights and Measures"[Mesh] OR “body weight”[mh] OR “body weight”[tiab] OR obesity[tiab] or obesity[mh] OR overweight[tiab] OR overweight[mh] OR "Body Composition"[Mesh] OR “body fat”[tiab] OR adipos*[tiab] OR weight[tiab] OR waist[tiab])


(“diet quality” OR dietary[tiab] OR nutrient* OR eating[tiab] OR food[tiab] OR diet[tiab] OR diet[mh]) AND (pattern* OR habit* OR Mediterranean[tiab] OR DASH OR (dietary approaches to stop hypertension) OR vegan* OR vegetarian* OR "Diet, Vegetarian"[Mesh]) Limit Eng/hum


Search Terms

(“body weight” OR obesity:ti, kw, ab OR overweight:ti, kw, ab)


(“Principal component analysis” OR “Factor analysis” OR “Cluster analysis” OR “rank regression” OR “Discriminant analysis”)


(“diet quality” OR dietary:ti, ab, kw OR nutrient*:ti, kw, ab OR eating:ti, kw, ab OR food:ti, kw, ab OR diet:ti, ab, kw) NOT (("accession number" near pubmed) OR ("accession number" near2 embase))


Search Terms

'body weight'/exp OR 'adipose tissue'/exp OR 'skinfold thickness'/exp OR  'body mass'/exp OR 'waist hip ratio'/exp OR ‘body fat’/exp OR ‘body fat distribution’/exp OR 'waist circumference'/exp OR overweight:ab, ti OR 'body mass index':ab, ti) AND (“diet quality” OR dietary:ab, ti OR nutrient*:ab, ti OR eating:ab, ti OR food:ab, ti OR diet:ab, ti OR 'eating habit'/exp)


(pattern? OR habit?:ab, ti OR Mediterranean:ab, ti OR DASH OR ‘dietary approaches to stop hypertension’:ti, ab OR vegan*:ab, ti OR vegetarian*:ab, ti OR  vegan*:ab, ti OR vegetarian*:ti, ab OR 'vegetarian diet'/exp OR  'vegetarian'/exp) AND (“Principal component analysis”:ab, ti OR “Factor analysis”:ab, ti OR “Cluster analysis”:ab, ti OR “rank regression”:ab, ti OR “Discriminant analysis”:ab, ti OR 'cluster analysis'/exp OR  'factorial analysis'/exp OR 'principal component analysis'/exp OR 'discriminant analysis'/exp OR 'regression analysis'/exp)  (Limit to Embase alone without Medline; eng/hum; articles & reviews)

Navigator (FSTA/CAB Abstracts/BIOSIS)

Search Terms

(“body weight” or title:obesity or abstract:obesity or overweight or adiposity or “body fat” or adipos*) and (nutrient* or eating or food or diet? or dietary) and (“principal component analysis” or “factor analysis” or “cluster analysis” or “rank regression” or “discriminant analysis”) -database:medline -(database:zoor OR database:agris) -database:Agricola

Total hits from all electronic database searches: 1505

Total articles identified to review from electronic databases: 413

Articles identified via handsearch or other means: Handsearch:

Wosje KS, Khoury PR, Claytor RP, Copeland KA, Hornung RW, Daniels SR, Kalkwarf HJ. Dietary patterns associated with fat and bone mass in young children.  Am J Clin Nutr. 2010 Aug;92(2):294-303. Epub 2010 Jun 2. PMID: 20519562


Summary of Articles Identified to Review

Number of Primary Articles Identified: 16

Number of Review Articles Identified: 0

Total Number of Articles Identified: 17

Number of Articles Reviewed but Excluded: 397


Figure F.2.      Flow chart of literature search results for studies examining the relationship between dietary patterns derived using factor and cluster analysis and reduced rank regression and risk of obesity

List of Included Articles for Evidence Analysis

Factor/Cluster Analysis (11)

  1. Boggs DA, Palmer JR, Spiegelman D, Stampfer MJ, Adams-Campbell LL, Rosenberg L. Dietary patterns and 14-y weight gain in African American women.  Am J Clin Nutr. 2011 Jul;94(1):86-94. Epub 2011 May 18. PMID: 21593501
  2. Duffey KJ, Steffen LM, Van Horn L, Jacobs DR Jr, Popkin BM.  Dietary patterns matter: diet beverages and cardiometabolic risks in the longitudinal Coronary Artery Risk Development in Young Adults (CARDIA) Study.  Am J Clin Nutr. 2012 Apr;95(4):909-15. Epub 2012 Feb 29. PMID: 22378729
  3. Hosseini-Esfahani F, Djazaieri SA, Mirmiran P, Mehrabi Y, Azizi F. Which Food Patterns Are Predictors of Obesity in Tehranian Adults?  J Nutr Educ Behav. 2011 Jun 7. [Epub ahead of print] PMID: 21652267
  4. McNaughton SA, Mishra GD, Stephen AM, Wadsworth ME. Dietary patterns throughout adult life are associated with body mass index, waist circumference, blood pressure, and red cell folate. J Nutr. 2007 Jan;137(1):99-105. PubMed PMID: 17182808
  5. Newby PK, Weismayer C, Akesson A, Tucker KL, Wolk A. Longitudinal changes in food patterns predict changes in weight and body mass index and the effects are greatest in obese women.  J Nutr. 2006 Oct;136(10):2580-7. PMID: 16988130
  6. Newby PK, Muller D, Hallfrisch J, Andres R, Tucker KL. Food patterns measured by factor analysis and anthropometric changes in adults.  Am J Clin Nutr. 2004 Aug;80(2):504-13. PMID: 15277177
  7. Newby PK, Muller D, Hallfrisch J, Qiao N, Andres R, Tucker KL. Dietary patterns and changes in body mass index and waist circumference in adults.  Am J Clin Nutr. 2003 Jun;77(6):1417-25. PMID: 12791618
  8. Quatromoni PA, Copenhafer DL, D'Agostino RB, Millen BE. Dietary patterns predict the development of overweight in women: The Framingham Nutrition Studies.  J Am Diet Assoc. 2002 Sep;102(9):1239-46. PMID: 12792620
  9. Ritchie LD, Spector P, Stevens MJ, Schmidt MM, Schreiber GB, Striegel-Moore RH, Wang MC, Crawford PB. Dietary patterns in adolescence are related to adiposity in young adulthood in black and white females.  J Nutr. 2007 Feb;137(2):399-406. PMID: 17237318
  10. Schulze MB, Fung TT, Manson JE, Willett WC, Hu FB. Dietary patterns and changes in body weight in women. Obesity (Silver Spring). 2006 Aug;14(8):1444-53. PMID: 16988088
  11. Togo P, Osler M, Sørensen TI, Heitmann BL. A longitudinal study of food intake patterns and obesity in adult Danish men and women.  Int J Obes Relat Metab Disord. 2004 Apr;28(4):583-93. PMID: 14770197
Reduced Rank Regression (6)
  1. Ambrosini DL, Emmett PM, Northstone K, Howe LD, Tilling K and Jebb SA. Identification of a dietary pattern prospectively associated with increased adiposity during childhood and adolescence. International Journal of Obesity. 2012; 36, 1299–1305; doi:10.1038/ijo.2012.127; published online 7 August 2012 Open
  2. Johnson L, Mander AP, Jones LR, Emmett PM, Jebb SA. Energy-dense, low-fiber, high-fat dietary pattern is associated with increased fatness in childhood.  Am J Clin Nutr. 2008 Apr;87(4):846-54. PMID: 18400706
  3. Noh HY, Song YJ, Lee JE, Joung H, Park MK, Li SJ, Paik HY. Dietary patterns are associated with physical growth among school girls aged 9-11 years.  Nutr Res Pract. 2011 Dec;5(6):569-77. Epub 2011 Dec 31. PMID: 22259683
  4. Schulz M, Nöthlings U, Hoffmann K, Bergmann MM, Boeing H. Identification of a food pattern characterized by high-fiber and low-fat food choices associated with low prospective weight change in the EPIC-Potsdam cohort.  J Nutr. 2005 May;135(5):1183-9. PMID: 15867301
  5. Sherafat-Kazemzadeh R, Egtesadi S, Mirmiran P, Gohari M, Farahani SJ, Esfahani FH, Vafa MR, Hedayati M, Azizi F. Dietary patterns by reduced rank regression predicting changes in obesity indices in a cohort study: Tehran Lipid and Glucose Study.  Asia Pac J Clin Nutr. 2010;19(1):22-32. PMID: 20199984
  6. Wosje KS, Khoury PR, Claytor RP, Copeland KA, Hornung RW, Daniels SR, Kalkwarf HJ. Dietary patterns associated with fat and bone mass in young children.  Am J Clin Nutr. 2010 Aug;92(2):294-303. Epub 2010 Jun 2. PMID: 20519562 (Hand search)

List of Excluded Articles with Reason

Click here to see excluded citations list.