Peer Reviewed

Cardiovascular Risk

Eating Alone May Increase CVD Risk in Older Women

Older women who primarily eat alone may have poorer nutritional knowledge and an increased risk of cardiovascular disease, according to the results of a recent cross-sectional study.

To better understand the impact of an eating companion on health outcomes in this patient population, the researchers utilized data from the 2016 Korean National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey VII-1. Included were 590 menopausal women aged 65 years or older.

Participants were categorized into 1 of 2 groups. In the eating-alone (EA) group, participants ate more than 2 meals per day alone. In the eating-with-others (EO) group, participants ate more than 2 meals a day with other people.

The results indicated that among the EA group, awareness of nutrition labels, the use of nutrition labels, and the impact of nutrition labels were lower when compared with the EO group. Further, the intake of energy, carbohydrates, dietary fiber, sodium, and potassium was lower in the EA group than in the EO group. The EA group had a 2.58-fold higher likelihood of having angina than the EO group.

“Older women who ate alone had poorer nutritional knowledge and intake,” the researchers concluded. “In addition, eating alone in older women was strongly associated with the prevalence of angina. Thus, it is necessary to consider nutrition education and cardiovascular disease screening for older women who mainly eat alone.”


—Leigh Precopio



Choi HG, Kim HY, Jang SJ. Association between eating alone and cardiovascular disease in elderly women: a cross-sectional study of KNHANES 2016 data. Menopause. Published online November 1, 2021.