Table 2.

Selected baseline characteristics and nutritional characteristics by quintiles of healthy plant-based diet index in the Atherosclerosis Risk in Communities studya

CharacteristicHealthy Plant-Based Diet Index, n=14,686
Quintile 1, n=3067Quintile 2, n=3214Quintile 3, n=2554Quintile 4, n=3407Quintile 5, n=2444
Median score (range)43 (18–45)48 (46–49)51 (50–52)55 (53–57)61 (58–75)
Women, %b4854575961
Black, %b2928252319
Age, yrb53 (6)54 (6)54 (6)54 (6)55 (6)
High school graduate, %b7175787984
BMI categoryb
 Normal weight, <25 kg/m22930343540
 Overweight, 25–<30 kg/m23939394039
 Obese, ≥30 kg/m23230272522
Current smoker, %b2928282323
Physical activity indexb2.3 (0.7)2.4 (0.8)2.5 (0.8)2.5 (0.8)2.6 (0.8)
Alcohol, g/wk39 (86)43 (93)45 (91)44 (101)46 (101)
Fasting glucose, mg/dlb109 (38)109 (39)108 (37)109 (43)106 (37)
Diabetes, %b1212111110
Hypertension, %3536343330
Lipid-lowering medication, %b23344
eGFR, ml/min per 1.73 mb104 (15)103 (15)103 (14)103 (14)102 (13)
Food and nutrient intake per day
 Healthy plant foodsb,c4.6 (2.4)5.7 (2.2)6.8 (2.4)8.0 (2.5)10.4 (2.9)
 Less healthy plant foodsb,c5.9 (2.8)5.0 (2.3)4.9 (2.5)4.8 (2.4)4.4 (2.1)
 Animal foodsb,c4.8 (2.3)4.3 (2.0)4.2 (1.9)4.2 (1.9)4.2 (1.9)
 Total energy, kcalb1568 (578)1524(548)1582 (574)1661 (552)1793 (514)
 Total protein, % of energyb17.7 (3.6)18.1 (3.7)18.3 (3.8)18.4 (3.9)18.7 (3.7)
 Animal protein, % of energyb13.9 (3.7)13.9 (3.8)13.8 (3.9)13.7 (4.0)13.5 (4.0)
 Plant protein, % of energyb3.9 (0.8)4.2 (0.9)4.5 (1.0)4.7 (1.1)5.2 (1.3)
 Carbohydrates, % of energyb46.4 (7.7)48.1 (8.3)49.0 (8.3)50.6 (8.4)52.7 (8.5)
 Total fat, % of energyb35.3 (5.3)33.3 (5.6)32.3 (5.8)31.0 (6.0)29.2 (6.1)
 Saturated fat, % of energyb13.0 (2.4)12.1 (2.5)11.6 (2.4)11.1 (2.6)10.2 (2.5)
 MUFA, % of energyb13.9 (2.3)13.0 (2.5)12.6 (2.6)12.0 (2.7)11.2 (2.8)
 PUFA, % of energyb5.1 (1.1)4.9 (1.2)4.9 (1.2)4.8 (1.2)4.8 (1.3)
 Fiber, g/1000 kcalb8.4 (2.3)9.9 (2.9)10.9 (3.1)12.1 (3.5)14.1 (4.0)
 Cholesterol, mg/1000 kcalb178.1 (56.9)163.7 (55.0)154.9 (50.7)144.6 (46.4)129.8 (42.3)
 Sodium, mg/1000 kcalb926.2 (168)925.7 (180)918.7 (177)932.2 (183)946.7 (189)
 Phosphorus, mg/1000 kcalb641.5 (143)661.6 (144)677.1 (144)693.3 (148)719.7 (143)
 Calcium, mg/1000 kcalb381.4 (153)397.7 (154)409.5 (164)427.3 (163)453.8 (169)
 Potassium, mg/1000 kcalb1481 (320)1615 (346)1698 (362)1771 (364)1900 (357)
 Magnesium, mg/1000 kcalb136.9 (28.8)152.8 (32.2)162.8 (32.9)171.7 (35.0)186.8 (34.7)
 Iron, mg/1000 kcalb6.6 (1.8)7.0 (2.1)7.2 (2.2)7.4 (2.3)7.6 (2.1)
 Vitamin A, IU/1000 kcalb4343 (2579)5401 (3403)6088 (3721)6855 (3957)8234 (5203)
 Vitamin C, mg/1000 kcalb69.1 (36.9)76.0 (39.7)79.6 (40.7)84.5 (41.9)90.7 (42.0)
 Folate, μg/1000 kcalb134.8 (46.0)146.1 (49.7)153.9 (51.0)162.2 (53.3)174.3 (52.2)
 Vitamin B12, μg/1000 kcalb4.7 (2.3)4.8 (2.3)4.7 (2.2)4.5 (2.1)4.2 (2.0)
 Zinc, mg/1000 kcalb6.7 (1.6)6.7 (1.6)6.7 (1.5)6.7 (1.5)6.6 (1.4)
 PRAL, mEq/db,d15.0 (12.3)12.1 (12.9)11.5 (13.4)11.7 (13.6)12.0 (14.5)
 NEAP, mEq/db,e55.4 (13.9)51.1 (13.9)48.5 (12.9)46.4 (11.8)43.4 (11.2)
  • BMI, body mass index; MUFA, monounsaturated fatty acids; NEAP; net endogenous acid production; PRAL, potential renal acid load; PUFA, polyunsaturated fatty acids.

  • a Values are means (SDs) for continuous variables and % for categorical variables.

  • b Indicates a statistical difference by quintiles of healthy plant-based diet index (P<0.05).

  • c Food intakes are expressed as servings per day.

  • d Potential renal acid load =0.49×protein (g)+0.037× phosphorus (mg)−0.021× potassium (mg)−0.026× magnesium (mg)−0.013× calcium (mg).

  • e Net endogenous acid production= 54.5×(protein [g]/potassium [mEq])–10.2.