Psychosocial and cultural determinants of dietary intake in community-dwelling older adults: A Determinants of Diet and Physical Activity systematic literature review

Eleonora Poggiogalle, Eva Kiesswetter, Mariagrazia Romano, Anna Saba, Fiorella Sinesio, Angela Polito, Elisabetta Moneta, Donatella Ciarapica, Silvia Migliaccio, Aleksandra Suwalska, Katarzyna Wieczorowska-Tobis, Wiktor Pałys, Dorota Łojko, Claire Sulmont-Rossé, Catherine Feart, Johannes Brug, Dorothee Volkert, Lorenzo M. Donini*

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articleAcademicpeer-review


Objectives: Knowledge of factors determining dietary intake is important to develop targeted strategies to prevent malnutrition and age-related diseases. The aim of the present systematic review was to analyze the state of the art regarding the role of social status, cultural aspects, and psychological distress on dietary intake in community-dwelling older adults. Methods: A systematic search was performed per the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-Analyses procedure. Titles, abstracts, and full texts were screened for predefined inclusion and exclusion criteria. Results: Thirty-nine studies were included. Seven different groups of psychosocial and cultural determinants were associated with dietary intake. Family structure and living situation (e.g., loneliness, marital status), educational level, and income were the most important determinants associated with dietary choices and eating behavior. Less frequently, social assets, demographic parameters, psychosocial status, and awareness of current dietary recommendations were associated with the quality of the eating pattern. Conclusions: The results of our review indicate heterogeneity of the studies in the field of social and psychological determinants of dietary patterns in older adults, but some important conclusions can be drawn. Further research harmonizing and integrating approaches and methodologies are required to better understand the determinants of dietary intake and the complexity of their interactions.
Original languageEnglish
Article number111131
Publication statusPublished - 1 May 2021
Externally publishedYes

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