Nutrition and Health Sciences, Department of



Kent M. Eskridge

Date of this Version



Published in Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health 13 (2011), pp. 111–118; doi: 10.1007/s10903-009-9314-z Copyright © 2010 Springer Science+Business Media, LLC. Used by permission.


Background: Low socioeconomic status (SES) and acculturation of Latino immigrants in the U.S. are linked to a decrease in diet quality. Methods: Interviews were conducted with 162 first-generation Latinas to examine the association of SES and acculturation with intake of omega-3 (n − 3) fatty acids. Each participant provided dietary intake by use of a validated n − 3 food frequency questionnaire administered twice, 4 weeks apart, three 24-h recalls, sociodemographic information and completed the 5-item Short Acculturation Scale. Results: Mean intakes of Total n − 3, α-linolenic acid (ALA), eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and docosahexaenoic acid (DHA) (g/d) were 1.2 ± 0.7, 1.1 ± 0.6, and 0.1 ± 0.1, respectively. After adjusting for energy intake, education was significantly correlated with EPA + DHA intakes, and acculturation was significantly correlated with Total n − 3, ALA and EPA + DHA intakes. Foods sources of EPA + DHA eaten by at least 50% of participants were chicken, shrimp, tuna and eggs. Discussion: Given the beneficial cardiovascular effects of n − 3 fatty acids, it is important to understand sociocultural factors affecting adequate intake towards an improvement in diet quality in minorities.