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Year : 2019  |  Volume : 10  |  Issue : 1  |  Page : 1

Reading the nutritional information on food labels among teachers with and without hypertension in Brazil

1 Program of Medical Residency in Clinical Medicine, University Hospital of Londrina, State University of Londrina, State of Paraná, Brazil
2 Department of Pharmacy, University of North Paraná, State of Paraná, Londrina, Brazil
3 Department of Public Health, State University of Londrina, Paraná State, Brazil

Correspondence Address:
Selma Maffei de Andrade
State University of Londrina, State of Paraná, Rodovia Celso Garcia Cid, Pr 445 Km 380, Campus Universitário Cx. Postal 10.011, CEP 86.057-970, Londrina – PR
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Source of Support: None, Conflict of Interest: None

DOI: 10.4103/2008-7802.250293

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Background: To examine the associations among nutritional label use, medically diagnosed hypertension, and sociodemographic factors among teachers. Methods: A cross-sectional study of elementary and secondary school teachers in Londrina, Paraná, Brazil, was conducted. Data regarding sociodemographic variables, hypertension diagnosis, and the reading of nutritional information on food/beverage labels were collected in 2012–2013. Associations were analyzed using Chi-square test or Fisher's exact test, and multivariate binary logistic regression models were used to adjust for possible confounders; odds ratios (ORs), 95% confidence intervals (CIs), and adjusted P values were calculated. Results: Of the 978 teachers interviewed, 15% were diagnosed with hypertension, and 62.5% read nutritional information in the 12 months prior to the survey (41% frequently or always). No differences were found between teachers with and without hypertension with regard to frequent reading (frequently/always) of nutritional labels. The frequent use of nutritional labels was significantly associated with female sex (OR = 1.39; 95% CI = 1.04–1.85) and the highest monthly family income level (OR = 1.82; 95% CI = 1.07–3.11). Teachers with hypertension reported checking for sodium more frequently than those without (adjusted P value = 0.040). Medical advice (adjusted P value <0.001) and choosing healthier foods (adjusted P value = 0.002) were the major reasons for reading labels provided by teachers with and without hypertension, respectively. Conclusions: Checking for sodium values on nutritional labels was significantly higher among teachers with hypertension, which most likely results from medical advice, and was the major reported reason for reading these labels.

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