Performance of the Global Diet Quality Score with Nutrition and Health Outcomes in Mexico with 24-h Recall and FFQ Data

J Nutr. 2021 Oct 23;151(12 Suppl 2):143S-151S. doi: 10.1093/jn/nxab202.


Background: The Global Diet Quality Score (GDQS) is intended as a simple global diet quality metric feasible in low- and middle-income countries facing the double burden of malnutrition.

Objective: The aim of this study was to evaluate the performance of the GDQS with markers of nutrient adequacy and chronic disease in nonpregnant nonlactating (NPNL) Mexican women of reproductive age and to compare it with the Alternate Healthy Eating Index-2010 (AHEI-2010) and the Minimum Dietary Diversity for Women (MDD-W).

Methods: We included NPNL women aged 15 to 49 y from the Mexican National Health and Nutrition Surveys (2012 and 2016) with 24-h recall (n = 2542) or a FFQ (n = 4975) (separate samples). We evaluated the correlation of the GDQS with the energy-adjusted intake of several nutrients and evaluated its association with health parameters using covariate-adjusted linear regression models.

Results: The GDQS was positively correlated with the intake of calcium, folate, iron, vitamin A, vitamin B-12, zinc, fiber, protein, and total fat (rho = 0.09 to 0.38, P < 0.05) and was inversely correlated with the intake of added sugar (rho = -0.37 and -0.38, P < 0.05) using both instruments, and with total fat, SFA, and MUFA only with 24-h recall data (rho = -0.06 to -0.16, P < 0.05). The GDQS was inversely associated with serum ferritin, BMI, waist circumference, and serum total and LDL cholesterol using FFQ data (P < 0.05), and was positively associated with serum folate using 24-h recall data (P < 0.05). Similar correlations and associations were observed with the MDD-W (only with micronutrients) and the AHEI-2010 (only with chronic disease-related nutrients and health markers).

Conclusions: In comparison to other diet metrics, the GDQS can capture both dimensions of nutrient adequacy and health markers related to the risk of chronic disease. The performance of the GDQS was satisfactory with either 24-h recall or FFQ.

Keywords: 24-h recall; ENSANUT; FFQ; GDQS; Mexican women; diet quality; noncommunicable disease; nutrient adequacy; nutrient intake.

Publication types

  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't

MeSH terms

  • Adolescent
  • Adult
  • Anthropometry
  • Cholesterol, LDL / blood
  • Diet Records
  • Diet*
  • Diet, Healthy*
  • Eating
  • Female
  • Ferritins / blood
  • Folic Acid / blood
  • Health Status*
  • Humans
  • Mental Recall
  • Mexico
  • Micronutrients / administration & dosage
  • Middle Aged
  • Nutrition Surveys
  • Nutritional Status*
  • Young Adult


  • Cholesterol, LDL
  • Micronutrients
  • Ferritins
  • Folic Acid