Nutrition and Health Sciences, Department of


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Chai, W.; Eaton, S.; Rasmussen, H.E.; Tao, M.-H. Associations of Dietary Lipid-Soluble Micronutrients with Hepatic Steatosis among Adults in the United States. Biomedicines 2021, 9, 1093. https://




Lipid-soluble micronutrients may be beneficial to non-alcoholic fatty liver disease due to their important roles in metabolism and maintaining tissue functions. Utilizing 2017–2018 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, this study examined the potential overall and race/ethnicity-specific (black, Hispanic and white) associations of dietary lipid-soluble micronutrients (α-tocopherol, retinol, vitamin D, β-carotene and total carotenoids) with hepatic steatosis. The analysis included 4376 adults (1037 blacks, 981 Hispanics, 1549 whites) aged ≥20 years who completed the transient elastography examination with dietary data available. Odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals (95%CI) were estimated using logistic regressions. The age-adjusted prevalence of steatosis was 20.9% for blacks, 34.0% for Hispanics and 28.7% for whites. Overall, dietary α-tocopherol was inversely associated with steatosis (highest vs. lowest quartile: OR = 0.51, 95%CI = 0.35–0.74, Ptrend = 0.0003). The associations remained significant among blacks (highest vs. lowest tertile: OR = 0.45, 95%CI = 0.26–0.77, Ptrend = 0.002) and whites (highest vs. lowest tertile: OR = 0.56, 95%CI = 0.33–0.94, Ptrend = 0.02). Higher α-tocopherol intake was associated with lower odds of steatosis among all (Ptrend = 0.016) and black participants (Ptrend = 0.003) classified as never/rare/occasional alcohol drinkers. There was a trend suggesting higher β-carotene intake with lower odds of steatosis (Ptrend = 0.01). Our results suggest potential protective effects of dietary vitamin E as α-tocopherol on steatosis particularly among blacks.