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Table 1 Socio-demographic characteristics, lifestyle characteristics, health status and dietary factors of the participants (n = 613)

From: Malnutrition risks and their associated factors among home-living older Chinese adults in Hong Kong: hidden problems in an affluent Chinese community

  Mean (SD) / n (%)
All (n = 613) Normal nutritional status (MNA ≥ 24)
(n = 434)
At risk or malnourished (MNA < 24)
(n = 179)
p-value
Socio-demographic characteristics
 Age (years) * [range: 60–106] 78.5 (7.4) 78.5 (7.0) 78.6 (8.1) 0.838
 Sexa
  Male 282 (46.0) 203 (46.8) 79 (44.1) 0.551
  Female 331 (54.0) 231 (53.2) 100 (55.9)
 Educational level
  No formal education 188 (30.7) 127 (29.3) 61 (34.1) 0.382
  Primary school 258 (42.1) 183 (42.2) 75 (41.9)
  Secondary school or above 167 (27.2) 124 (28.6) 43 (24.0)
 Employment status
  Retired 580 (94.9) 412 (94.9) 168 (94.9) 0.825
  Unemployed 18 (2.9) 12 (2.8) 6 (3.4)
  Have part-time/full-time job 13 (2.1) 10 (2.3) 3 (1.7)
 Monthly household income (HK$)
  < 6000 497 (81.1) 352 (81.1) 145 (81.0) 0.992
  ≥ 6000 64 (10.4) 45 (10.4) 19 (10.6)
  Unsure 49 (8.0) 35 (8.1) 14 (7.8)
  Number of missing 3 (0.5) 2 (0.5) 1 (0.6)
 Received CSSA
  No 247 (40.3) 186 (42.9) 61 (34.1) 0.042
  Yes 365 (59.5) 247 (56.9) 118 (65.9)
  Number of missing 1 (0.2) 1 (0.2) 0 (0)
 Marital Status
  Single/divorced/separated/widowed 328 (53.5) 226 (52.1) 102 (57.0) 0.268
  Married/cohabited 285 (46.5) 208 (47.9) 77 (43.0)
 Living alone
  No 225 (36.7) 157 (36.2) 68 (38.0) 0.672
  Yes 388 (63.3) 277 (63.8) 111 (62.0)
Lifestyle characteristics
 Smoking status
  Non-smoker 451 (73.6) 319 (73.5) 132 (73.7) 0.055
  Ex-smoker 96 (15.7) 75 (17.3) 21 (11.7)
  Current smoker 66 (10.8) 40 (9.2) 26 (14.5)
 Drinking status
  Non-drinker 488 (79.6) 343 (79.0) 145 (81.0) 0.721
  Ex-drinker 68 (11.1) 51 (11.8) 17 (9.5)
  Current drinker 57 (9.3) 40 (9.2) 17 (9.5)
 Level of physical activity (IPAQ-SF)
  Low 82 (13.4) 47 (10.8) 35 (19.6) 0.005
  Moderate 339 (55.3) 239 (55.1) 100 (55.9)
  High 180 (29.4) 139 (32.0) 41 (22.9)
  Number of missing 12 (2.0) 9 (2.1) 3 (1.7)
Health status
 Total CCI scoreb
  0 302 (49.3) 221 (50.9) 81 (45.3) 0.059
  1 184 (30.0) 134 (30.9) 50 (27.9)
  2 58 (9.5) 34 (7.8) 24 (13.4)
  ≥ 3 61 (10.0) 38 (8.8) 23 (12.8)
  Number of missing 8 (1.3) 7 (1.6) 1 (0.6)
 Hearing ability
  Clear 359 (58.6) 273 (62.9) 86 (48.0) < 0.001
  Fair 170 (27.7) 116 (26.7) 54 (30.2)
  Unclear 84 (13.7) 45 (10.4) 39 (21.8)
 Visual ability
  Clear 270 (44.0) 218 (50.2) 52 (29.1) < 0.001
  Fair 198 (32.3) 135 (31.1) 63 (35.2)
  Unclear 145 (23.7) 81 (18.7) 64 (35.8)
 Use of denture
  No 219 (35.7) 160 (36.9) 59 (33.0) 0.373
  Yes 392 (63.9) 273 (62.9) 119 (66.5)
  Number of missing 2 (0.3) 1 (0.2) 1 (0.6)
 Difficulty in chewing food
  No 374 (61.0) 276 (63.6) 98 (54.7) 0.038
  Yes 238 (38.8) 157 (36.2) 81 (45.3)
  Number of missing 1 (0.2) 1 (0.2) 0 (0)
 Usual appetite
  Good 338 (55.1) 278 (64.1) 60 (33.5) < 0.001
  Normal 241 (39.3) 148 (34.1) 93 (52.0)
  Bad 34 (5.5) 8 (1.8) 26 (14.5)
Dietary factors
 Below recommendation of the dietary guidelinesc:
  Grains (3 to 5 bowls per day) 199 (32.5) 127 (29.3) 72 (40.2) 0.008
  Vegetables (at least 3 servings per day) 508 (82.9) 351 (80.9) 157 (87.7) 0.041
  Fruits (at least 2 servings per day) 447 (72.9) 303 (69.8) 144 (80.4) 0.007
  Meats (5 to 6 taels per day) 572 (93.3) 403 (92.9) 169 (94.4) 0.541
  Milk (1 to 2 glass per day) 493 (80.4) 352 (81.1) 141 (78.8) 0.473
 Usually cooking food myself
  No 127 (20.7) 84 (19.4) 43 (24.0) 0.202
  Yes 481 (78.5) 346 (79.7) 135 (75.4)
  Number of missing 5 (0.8) 4 (0.9) 1 (0.6)
 Dietary supplements consumption
  No 386 (63.0) 267 (61.5) 119 (66.5) 0.248
  Yes 227 (37.0) 167 (38.5) 60 (33.5)
Dietary behaviour
 Favour food group
  No preference 54 (8.8) 30 (6.9) 24 (13.4) 0.022
  Grains 165 (26.9) 108 (24.9) 57 (31.8)
  Vegetables 167 (27.2) 128 (29.5) 39 (21.8)
  Fruits 70 (11.4) 55 (12.7) 15 (8.4)
  Meats 146 (23.8) 104 (24.0) 42 (23.5)
  Others (milk or fat/salt/sugar) 6 (1.0) 4 (0.9) 2 (1.1)
  Number of missing 5 (0.8) 5 (1.2) 0 (0)
 Usual number of main meals skipped per day
  One or more 106 (17.3) 59 (13.6) 47 (26.3) < 0.001
  None 507 (82.7) 375 (86.4) 132 (73.7)
 Preferred temperature of food and drink
  Warm 365 (59.5) 269 (62.0) 96 (53.6) 0.088
  Hot 226 (36.9) 148 (34.1) 78 (43.6)
  Cold 21 (3.4) 16 (3.7) 5 (2.8)
  Number of missing 1 (0.2) 1 (0.2) 0 (0)
  1. CCI Charlson comorbidity index, CSSA comprehensive social security assistance, HK$ Hong Kong dollar, IPAQ-SF the international physical activity questionnaire – short form
  2. Data marked with * are presented as mean (standard deviation), all others are presented as frequency (%)
  3. aSex distribution of the Hong Kong population aged 60 or above: males, 643,258 (47.6%); females, 707,438 (52.4%) [48]
  4. bTotal score of Charlson comorbidity index was calculated by the summation of weighed scores of each presented condition of the individual
  5. cThe dietary guidelines were based on the serving size recommendation in the Healthy Eating Food Pyramid for Elderly, developed by Department of Health, Hong Kong [47]. The five major food groups include grains (e.g. rice, noodles, starchy vegetables, bread and oat meals), vegetables (e.g. leafy vegetables, melon, mushroom), fruits (e.g. apple, banana, dried fruits), meats (e.g. beef, fish, egg) and milk (e.g. cow milk, yogurt, cheese) [47]. One bowl equals to 250-300 ml, one serving of vegetable equals to half bowl of cooked vegetables, one serving of fruit equals to one medium-sized fruit, one tael of meats equals to meats with the size of a table tennis ball and one glass equals to 240 ml [47].