Objectives: Meal and nutrition are important lifestyle factors that affect maintenance and promotion of health status and are also associated with chronic diseases. In Sasang constitutional medicine, dietary behavior according to the characteristics of Sasang constitution (SC) types is a key component in health management. The aim of this study was to evaluate the nutritional status and quality of meals according to the SC.
Methods: This was a cross-sectional study of 1,947 subjects surveyed in a community-based cohort called the Korean Medicine Daejeon Citizen Cohort study. Data were collected including demographic characteristics, Korea Sasang Constitutional Diagnostic Questionnaire, and nutrition quotient (NQ) for adults. We analyzed the differences in NQ grade and scores among three SC types: Taeeumin (TE), Soeumin (SE), and Soyangin (SY), by conducting chi-square and ANCOVA tests.
Results: The distribution of SC into TE, SE, and SY types was 43.1%, 25.2%, and 31.8%, respectively. The mean NQ score of all subjects was 53.4±8.6. There was a significant difference in the distribution of NQ grades and mean of NQ scores among SC types, including total and four sub-factors: balance, diversity, moderation, and dietary behavior. The TE type had the lowest score for the moderation factors in the crude model. The SE type showed lower NQ scores than the TE and SY types in all domains except moderation after adjusting for variables.
Conclusions: We found that dietary behaviors had to be distinct according to the SC types. These results elucidate why it is important to develop a customized dietary habit management program considering the SC types.