Persistent organic pollutants (POPs) are endocrine disruptors that are typically ingested in food. Using data from the Ewha Birth and Growth Cohort study, we identified dietary patterns related to blood persistent organic pollutant (POP) levels in children. In total, 188 Korean children (95 boys and 93 girls) aged 7–9 years were included in this study. Daily food intake data derived from a semi-quantitative food-frequency questionnaire were grouped into 33 food groups. Dietary patterns were analyzed using the reduced rank regression method, with blood POP levels as dependent variables. The marker polychlorinated biphenyl (PCB) pattern showed more weighted loading factors in the intake of shellfish/salted seafood, cheese, nuts and seeds, and total PCBs showed similar results. The dioxin-like PCB pattern was characterized by a higher intake of yogurt, beverages, and fruit and a lower intake of grain, seaweeds, and processed meat. Additionally, the total organochlorine pesticide (OCP) pattern showed positive factor loading values in shrimp and beverages, and negative factor loading values in seaweeds and processed meat. Each dietary pattern accounted for 25.0% of total OCPs, 22.9% of dioxin-like PCBs, 21.6% of marker PCBs, and 21.3% of total PCBs in blood. Dietary pattern scores were linearly related to blood POP levels, and this association remained after adjusting for sex, age, follow-up survey year, maternal educational level, body mass index, and total energy. Dietary patterns differed slightly among the individual POPs. Further studies are needed to develop an intervention strategy for children.
- Dietary pattern
- Persistent organic pollutants