Effects of lunch club attendance on the dietary intake of older adults in the UK: A pilot cross-sectional study

Fotini Tsofliou*, Maria G. Grammatikopoulou, Rosie Lumley, Konstantinos Gkiouras, Jose Lara, Carol Clark

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)
3 Downloads (Pure)


Background: Lunch clubs are community-based projects where meals are offered with opportunities for social interaction, and a unique dining experience of dual commercial and communal nature. Aim: The aim of the present cross-sectional study was to assess differences in the dietary intake between lunch club and non-lunch club days among community-dwelling elderly, living in Dorset, UK. Methods: A total of 39 elderly individuals attending local lunch clubs were recruited. Socioeconomic factors were recorded, anthropometric measurements were taken and the dietary intake was assessed in lunch club and non-lunch club days via 24 hour dietary recalls. Results: For the majority of participants, having a hot meal (74.4%), meeting with friends (92.3%), dining outside home (76.9%), having a home-styled cooked meal (71.8%) and skipping cooking (43.6%) were considered as important factors for lunch club dining. Absolute energy intake, protein, fat, carbohydrate, saturated fatty acids, fibre, potassium, calcium, iron, vitamins A, C and folate and water from drinks were significantly greater on lunch club days. When intake was expressed as a percentage of the dietary reference values, all examined nutrients were consumed in greater adequacy during lunch club days, except potassium and vitamin D. Conclusions: Lunch clubs appear to be an effective means for ameliorating nutrient intake among older adults, while in parallel, offer the opportunity for socializing and sharing a hot meal with peers.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)209-214
Number of pages6
JournalNutrition and Health
Issue number3
Early online date18 May 2020
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2020


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