Document Type



Master of Science (MS)


Dietetics and Nutrition

First Advisor's Name

Fatma Huffman

First Advisor's Committee Title

Committee Chair

Second Advisor's Name

David Lee

Third Advisor's Name

Dian Weddle

Date of Defense



The purpose of this study was to show variations of folate intake, folate food sources, and diet by age, gender, and ethnicity in Metro-Dade Firefighters and to also determine the prevalence of obesity, physical inactivity and history heart disease. Low folate status may play a role in cardiovascular risk via its effect on homocysteine metabolism. Firefighters (n=127) recruited from randomly selected fire stations completed food-frequency and socio-demographic questionnaires.

Significantly (p<.05) more African-Americans failed to meet at least 75% of the dietary reference intake (DRI) for folate than whites or Hispanics. There were significant differences in protein, vegetable, and meat intakes between age groups. Almost 78% of firefighters were overweight (BMI≥25). There were significant (p<.001) differences in BMI among ethnic groups. Older firefighters reported significantly (p<.05) more CVD risk factors than younger firefighters. Metro-Dade firefighters were found to be similar to the general US population in that most of the risk factors, overweight and obesity, high fat intakes, and low folate intake were modifiable and diet related.



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