Mal J Nutr 23(3): 319-327, 2017

Nutritional Quality of Meals, Food Intake, Physical Activity and Length of Stay Predict Nutritional Status of Institutionalised Elderly Filipinos
de Guzman AB, Lago BMM, Nieves RAA, Parungao Ma NCC, Tin CKS & Urquiza KCJO
Nutrition and Dietetics Department, College of Education, University of Santo Tomas, 1015, The Philippines


Introduction: Increasingly, the threat of malnutrition in geriatric institutions is affected by several factors such as cognition, immobility, oral problems, and psychological status. Low food intake is seen to be the primary cause of geriatric malnutrition. Further, greater length of stay and higher physical activity were significantly associated with reduced body weight and good health status, respectively. This study aimed to identify how nutritional quality of meals, food intake, physical activity and length of stay affect the nutritional status of institutionalised elderly in the Philippines. Methods: Data for this study were obtained using food weighing records, 24-hour food recall, Physical Activity Scale for Elderly (PASE), and Mini Nutritional Assessment (MNA) among 100 purposively recruited institutionalised elderly. Macronutrients were computed based on the Philippine Food Composition Table (FCT) while adequacy was evaluated based on the Philippine Dietary Reference Intake (PDRI). Results: The use of Partial Least Square (PLS) regression analysis revealed that of the variables, only food intake (ß=0.17; p=0.04), physical activity (ß=0.16; p=0.04) and length of stay of elderly in the institution (ß=0.18; p<.01) had a weak positive effect on the nutritional status of the institutionalised elderly. Conclusion: This study showed the role of food intake, physical activity and length of stay in the nutritional status of elderly in home care settings. This implies that assessment of the nutritional status and its associated factors remains vital in the development of nutrition intervention and the provision of quality food planning and service in institutionalised settings.

Keywords: Elderly, food intake, length of stay (LOS), nutritional quality of meals, nutritional status, physical activity,

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