Smokers report lower intake of key nutrients than nonsmokers, yet both fall short of meeting recommended intakes

Susan K. Raatz, Lisa Jahns, Lu Ann K. Johnson, Angela Scheett, Alicia Carriquiry, Andrine Lemieux, Motohiro Nakajima, Mustafa al'Absi

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17 Scopus citations


Smoking is a major risk factor in the development of preventable disease which may be due to a poorer diet and the reduced nutrient intake of smokers. Our objective was to compare and evaluate the reported intake of current smokers with that of nonsmokers among participants of a study evaluating stress and smoking. We hypothesized (1) that overall energy and nutrient intake would be reduced in smokers compared with nonsmokers and (2) that smokers would have increased noncompliance with Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs). Men and women (smokers n = 138, nonsmokers n = 46) completed a 3-day diet record at baseline. Mean energy and nutrient intakes were stratified by smoking status and compared with DRI levels. The mean body mass index was 28.3 ± 0.5 kg/m2 for smokers and 27.2 ± 1.0 kg/m2 for nonsmokers. Compared with nonsmokers, the smokers reported lower intakes of energy, total polyunsaturated fatty acids, linolenic acid, docosahexaenoic acid, total sugars, calcium, iron, magnesium, phosphorus, potassium, vitamin C, riboflavin, niacin, pantothenic acid, vitamin B6, folate, vitamin A, and vitamin E. Smokers reported reduced compliance with the DRIs for iron, phosphorus, vitamin C, riboflavin, and folate compared with nonsmokers. Unlike other evaluations of smokers vs nonsmokers, we observed no difference in body weight between groups. Smokers and nonsmokers alike reported dietary intakes lower than the DRIs for many nutrients. However, the reported nutrient intake of the smokers was substantially lower than nonsmokers for key nutrients, and they were more likely to not comply with the DRIs for essential nutrients, placing them at increased risk of chronic disease.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)30-37
Number of pages8
JournalNutrition Research
StatePublished - Sep 2017

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
The authors would like to thank the participants in the study. Special thanks to Jie Gooder, Leif Olson, Elizabeth Ford, and Alyssa Wojciechowski for managing the DR data on This work was supported by the United States Department of Agriculture (SKR, project number 3062-51000-053-00D) (LJ, project number 3062-51000-051-00D) and the National Institutes of Health (AL, MN, and MA grant numbers R01DA016351 and R01DA027232). MA was responsible for the design of the primary project. SR, MA, and MN were involved in the design and implementation of the data presented in this manuscript. AL and MN provided the data management. LAJ and AC performed the statistical analysis. SR, LJ, and AS performed the data evaluation. SR prepared the manuscript, and all authors were involved in its review and approved the final version of the manuscript.

Publisher Copyright:
© 2017


  • Diet records
  • Dietary intake
  • Nonsmoking
  • Nutrient intake
  • Smoking


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