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Gender differences in the dietary intake of antioxidants in young adults

1 May 2000


Antioxidants which can only be obtained from the diet are protective against free radical damage which is associated with diseases such as cancer, macular degeneration, and cataracts. A diet high in antioxidants found in fruits and vegetables including spinach is beneficial for general health and ocular health. The daily dietary intake of the antioxidants lutein, beta-carotene, zinc, vitamin C, and vitamin E as well as vitamin A, fat, and iron was determined using a food frequency questionnaire in 49 healthy young adults. Significant gender differences were found for the dietary intake of vitamin C, vitamin E, iron, and zinc with men consuming more than women of these nutrients (p < 0.05). When adjusted for caloric intake, women consume more lutein than men (p < 0.05). Males exceeded the Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDA) for all items with RDAs. Females exceeded the RDA for all items except zinc. 4


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