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Diet intake and caries prevalence in four-year-old children living in a low-prevalence country.
Umeå University, Faculty of Social Sciences, Department of Food and Nutrition.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Odontology, Pediatric Dentistry.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Clinical Sciences, Paediatrics.
Umeå University, Faculty of Medicine, Department of Clinical Sciences, Paediatrics.
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2007 (English)In: Caries Research, ISSN 0008-6568, E-ISSN 1421-976X, Vol. 41, no 1, 26-33 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Preventive measures have dramatically decreased the prevalence of dental caries in children. However, risk factors for the disease in children living in low-prevalence areas remain elusive. In the present study we evaluated associations between dental caries, saliva levels of mutans streptococci and lactobacilli, and diet with special emphasis on the intake of fermentable carbohydrates and dairy products in 4-year-old children living in an area where the overall caries prevalence was low. Dietary intake was recorded in 234 infants as part of the Study of Infant Nutrition in Umea, Sweden (SINUS). Of these the parents of 124 children gave consent to participate in a follow-up at 4 years of age. Dietary intake, height and weight, dental caries, oral hygiene, including tooth brushing habits, presence of plaque and gingival inflammation, fluoride habits and numbers of mutans streptococci and lactobacilli in saliva were recorded. Using multivariate stepwise logistic regression, caries experience was negatively associated with intake frequency of cheese (OR = 0.67; 95% CI = 0.44-0.98) and positively associated with the salivary level of mutans streptococci (OR = 1.57; 95% CI = 1.21-2.03). Caries experience was not correlated with intake frequency or amounts of carbohydrate-containing foods, with any other particular food, or with daily intake of energy, carbohydrate or any other macro- or micronutrient. We conclude that cheese intake may have a caries-protective effect in childhood populations where the overall caries prevalence and caries experience are low and the children are regularly exposed to fluoride from toothpaste.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Basel: S. Karger AG , 2007. Vol. 41, no 1, 26-33 p.
National Category
Dentistry Food Science
Research subject
Odontology; Food and Nutrition
URN: urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-14272DOI: 10.1159/000096102PubMedID: 17167256OAI: diva2:153943
Available from: 2008-02-01 Created: 2008-02-01 Last updated: 2011-01-27Bibliographically approved
In thesis
1. Health implications of dietary intake in infancy and early childhood
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Health implications of dietary intake in infancy and early childhood
2008 (English)Doctoral thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

Introduction: Swedish children are the healthiest in Europe. Through regular visits to well-baby clinics, infants and young children are checked and parents given information and advice on diet and other relevant matters for their child. For a long time, adequate nutrition during infancy and childhood has been focused on encouraging proper nutrition, preventing malnutrition and deficiency states, and obtaining optimal growth. Today, malnutrition and deficiency states in infants and children are rare. But other public health problems have arisen. Nutrition early in life is now thought to influence health and diseases even in adulthood. Thus promotion of a healthy diet in early life is important for preventing public health diseases such as iron deficiency, cardiovascular disease, obesity, and dental caries.

Aims: This study investigates health implications of dietary intake in infancy and early childhood. More specific focus was on the associations between dietary fat intake and serum lipid levels in infants, early dietary intake, iron status, dental caries, and Body Mass Index (BMI) at 4 years of age. In addition, hereditary factors and changes over time were evaluated.

Methods: Before 6 month of age, 300 healthy infants were recruited from well-baby clinics in Umeå. This thesis is based on secondary analysis of a prospective study in these infants run from 6-18 months and a follow-up of 127 of the children at 4 years. Between 6-18 months and at 4 years, dietary intakes were assessed, anthropometric measures performed, and venous blood samples taken. At 4 years, a dental examination was also performed and anthropometric data and blood samples were collected from parents and included in the study.

Results: All but two infants were ever breastfed and at 6 months 73% were still breastfed. The quality of dietary fat was not within national recommendations. At 4 years, intake of vitamin D and selenium were below and intake of sugar and sweet products above the recommendations. In girls, but not boys, higher polyunsaturated fatty acid intake was associated with lower levels of total cholesterol, low-density lipoprotein cholesterol, and apolipoprotein B levels. Iron status of the children was generally good and no child had iron deficiency anaemia (IDA). Children’s haemoglobin (Hb) levels tracked from infancy to 4 years and correlated with their mother’s Hb. Fortified infant products and meat were important sources of iron at both 12 months and 4 years. Children with frequent intake of cheese had less caries in this population with low caries prevalence. We found higher protein intake over time to be associated with higher Body Mass Index (BMI) at 4 years and high BMI at 4 years was associated with high BMI at 6 mo. There was also an association between the BMI of the child and that of its parents.

Conclusions: BMI of the child and parents (especially the father), and iron status at 6 months were predictors of these variables at 4 years of age. The quality rather than the quantity of dietary fat in infancy affected serum lipid values. Even in a healthy and well-nourished group of Swedish infants and young children, quality of food and intake of nutrients are important for current and later health of the child.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Umeå: Kostvetenskap, 2008. 66 p.
Infant nutrition, child nutrition, child health, serum lipids, iron status, caries, BMI
urn:nbn:se:umu:diva-1812 (URN)987-91-7264-615-5 (ISBN)
Public defence
2008-09-26, Betula, 6M, Norrlands Universitetsjukhus, Umeå, 09:00 (English)
Available from: 2008-09-05 Created: 2008-09-05 Last updated: 2015-10-12Bibliographically approved

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Öhlund, IngerLif Holgerson, PernillaLind, TorbjörnHernell, OlleJohansson, Ingegerd
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