La Trobe
1162342_Li,P_2021.pdf (318.57 kB)

Diet quality and cognitive performance in australian adults aged 55–85 years: A cross-sectional analysis of the hunter community study cohort

Download (318.57 kB)
journal contribution
posted on 19.04.2021, 06:06 by PF Li, Mark McEvoy, S McKiernan, PW Schofield, LK Macdonald-Wicks, AJ Patterson
There is a lack of evidence to determine if diet quality is associated with cognitive performance in older adults. Therefore, the aim of this study was to examine whether diet quality is associated with cognitive performance among older adults. A cross-sectional, secondary analysis of baseline data from the Hunter Community Study (HCS), comparing diet quality, measured using the Australian Recommended Food Score (ARFS), along with validated cognitive performance instruments the Audio Recorded Cognitive Screen (ARCS) and the Mini-Mental State Examination (MMSE) were undertaken in adults aged 55–85 years, living in Newcastle, NSW, Australia. Adjusted linear regression analyses showed that, compared with the lowest ARFS quintile, those in the highest quintile had an ARCS score 5.883 units greater (p < 0.001; R = 0.0098). Furthermore, when quintiles of ARFS score were tested against each ARCS sub-scale score, statistically significant associations were observed with the greatest effect for the Memory (β = 4.055; p = 0.001; R = 0.0065) and Attention (β = 4.136; p = 0.002; R = 0.0047) domains. No statistically significant associations were observed between quintiles of ARFS and MMSE score in the adjusted linear regression analyses. In conclusion, a positive association was observed between diet quality and cognitive performance within this sample of older Australian adults. Further investigation of the above association over time, when follow-up data becomes available, in longitudinal analysis is recommended. 2 2 2


The Authors would like to thank participants of the Hunter Community Study (HCS) by providing data for this study. We also appreciate the financial support to HCS from the University of Newcastle and the Vincent Fairfax Family Foundation.


Publication Date








Article Number

ARTN 909







Rights Statement

The Author reserves all moral rights over the deposited text and must be credited if any re-use occurs. Documents deposited in OPAL are the Open Access versions of outputs published elsewhere. Changes resulting from the publishing process may therefore not be reflected in this document. The final published version may be obtained via the publisher’s DOI. Please note that additional copyright and access restrictions may apply to the published version.