Associations between seafood intake frequency and diet and health indicators among U.S. adults: NHANES 2011–2016

Hannah Church, Sayaka Nagao-Sato, Francine M Overcash, Marla Reicks

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4 Scopus citations


Seafood provides nutritional benefits, but is not commonly consumed by most Americans. Regression analyses were used to examine associations between self-reported seafood intake frequency, diet quality and health indicators among U.S. adults (20–65 years) based on data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES 2011–2016) (n = 11,478). A low percentage (14 %) consumed seafood ≥8 times/month. The proportion consuming seafood ≥8 times/month was higher among foreign-born compared to U.S.-born adults and those with more education and higher incomes. Individuals consuming seafood intake ≥8 times/month had higher Healthy Eating Index-2015 scores, greater intakes of protein, cholesterol and alcohol, certain vitamins and minerals, most monounsaturated and polyunsaturated fatty acids, fruits, vegetables and total meat, and lower intakes of carbohydrates, total sugars, saturated fatty acids, dairy, refined grains, and solid fats and added sugars than those consuming seafood <8 times/month. Body mass index, waist circumference, diastolic blood pressure and sedentary time were lower, while high-density lipoprotein-cholesterol, total blood mercury, and blood cadmium and lead were higher among those consuming seafood ≥8 times vs. < 8 times/month. Findings indicate that seafood intake frequency ≥8 times/month was consistent with a healthy diet and lifestyle, yet concerns were noted regarding blood levels of heavy metals.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number104054
JournalJournal of Food Composition and Analysis
StatePublished - Sep 1 2021

Bibliographical note

Publisher Copyright:
© 2021 Elsevier Inc.


  • Fish
  • Health indicators
  • NHANES 2011–2016
  • Nutrient intake
  • Seafood


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