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In this study we developed a health status index using the commonly recorded health measures by doctors and hospitals. This health status index has a minimum possible value of 7 (the least healthy) and a maximum value of 21 (the healthiest). Using the NHANES data, we explored the relationship of this health status index and nutrient intakes, lifestyle, and demographics of the respondent. Regression results showed that as the age of the respondent, being non-Hispanic black, participants of food stamp programs, high percent of calories that came from fat intakes, high percent of calories in beverages that came from soft drinks, smoking, and on special diets are negatively related to the value of the health status index (i.e., the person became less healthy); household income, college education, eating breakfast, and the amount of exercise are positively related value of the health status index (the person became healthier). These results indicate that the health status index developed in this study had the desired properties.


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