Dietary Behavior and Urinary Gallic Acid Concentrations in Older Minority Residents of East Harlem, New York City

Cristina N. Zambrano, Cicely Johnson, Wenyue Lu, Maayan Beeber, April Panitz, Katarzyna Wyka, Safa Ibrahim, Marilyn Fraser, Aisha Bhimla, Yin Tan, Khursheed Navder, Ming Chin Yeh, Grace X. Ma, Olorunseun O. Ogunwobi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


In this multidisciplinary study, we explored relationships between demographic factors, dietary habits, and gallic acid, a polyphenolic biomarker that correlates with self-reported dietary behaviors and negatively correlates with the incidence of cancer. Thirty-three (33) participants were recruited from a senior center in East Harlem, New York City, a racially diverse and underserved community. A National Institute of Health (NIH)-validated survey questionnaire was used to gather dietary behavior data, alongside demographic and cancer history information. Urine samples were obtained from participants for analyzing gallic acid content level. All 33 recruited participants completed the survey and 25 of them provided urine samples for gallic acid analysis. Associations between demographic factors and intake of certain foods were observed. Specifically, age was negatively associated with French fries/fried potatoes, cooked dried beans, and tomato soup intake (p < 0.05), and Black/African American race was associated with increased consumption of fruits and vegetables in comparison to Hispanic/Latino ethnicity (p < 0.05). No associations between urinary gallic acid levels and demographic information was observed. However, French fries/fried potatoes intake was significantly associated with urinary gallic acid concentration (p < 0.01). The small sample size limited the execution of meaningful statistical analysis. However, this study provided preliminary findings about the dietary behavior of older adults in East Harlem, New York City, which will serve as a basis for a future larger study to investigate nutrition/dietary education intervention on cancer prevention among diverse elderly residents in New York City.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)217-223
Number of pages7
JournalJournal of racial and ethnic health disparities
Issue number2
StatePublished - Apr 1 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Black or African American
  • Diet/ethnology
  • Female
  • Gallic Acid/urine
  • Hispanic or Latino
  • Humans
  • Male
  • Middle Aged
  • Neoplasms/ethnology
  • New York City
  • Socioeconomic Factors


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