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The European Food Safety Authority has suggested that EU countries implement the 2 × 24 h diet recall (2 × 24 h DR) method and physical activity (PA) measurements for national dietary surveys. Since 2000, Denmark has used 7 d food diaries (7 d FD) with PA questionnaires and measurements. The accuracy of the reported energy intakes (EI) from the two diet methods, pedometer-determined step counts and self-reported time spent in moderate-to-vigorous PA (MVPA) were compared with total energy expenditure measured by the doubly labelled water (TEEDLW) technique and with PA energy expenditure (PAEE), respectively. The study involved fifty-two male and sixty-eight female volunteers aged 18–60 years who were randomly assigned to start with either the 24 h DR or the web-based 7 d FD, and wore a pedometer for the first 7 d and filled in a step diary. The mean TEEDLW (11·5 MJ/d) was greater than the mean reported EI for the 7 d FD (9·5 MJ/d (P < 0·01)) but the same as the 2 × 24 h DR (11·5 MJ/d). The proportion of under-reporters was 34 % (7 d FD) and 4 % (2 × 24 h DR). Most participants preferred the 7 d DR as it was more flexible, despite altering their eating habits. Pearson’s correlation between steps corrected for cycling and PAEE was r = 0·44, P < 0·01. Spearman’s correlation for self-reported hours spent in MVPA and PAEE was r = 0·58, P < 0·01. The 2 × 24 h DR performs better than the existing 7 d FD method. Pedometer-determined steps and self-reported MVPA are good predictors of PAEE in adult Danes.
A child's diet is an important determinant for later health, growth and development. In Denmark, most children in primary school bring their own packed lunch from home and attend an after-school care institution. The aim of the present study was to evaluate the food, energy and nutrient intake of Danish school children in relation to dietary guidelines and nutrient recommendations, and to assess the food intake during and outside school hours. In total, 834 children from nine public schools located in the eastern part of Denmark were included in this cross-sectional study and 798 children (95·7 %) completed the dietary assessment sufficiently (August–November 2011). The whole diet was recorded during seven consecutive days using the Web-based Dietary Assessment Software for Children (WebDASC). Compared with the food-based dietary guidelines and nutrient recommendations, 85 % of the children consumed excess amounts of red meat, 89 % consumed too much saturated fat, and 56 % consumed too much added sugar. Additionally 35 or 91 % of the children (depending on age group) consumed insufficient amounts of fruits and vegetables, 85 % consumed insufficient amounts of fish, 86 % consumed insufficient amounts of dietary fibre, 60 or 84 % had an insufficient Fe intake (depending on age group), and 96 % had an insufficient vitamin D intake. The study also showed that there is a higher intake of fruits and bread during school hours than outside school hours; this is not the case with, for example, fish and vegetables, and future studies should investigate strategies to increase fish and vegetable intake during school hours.
To assess the relative validity of a semi-quantitative, web-based FFQ completed by female pregnancy planners in the Danish ‘Snart Forældre’ study.
We validated a web-based FFQ based on the FFQ used in the Danish National Birth Cohort against a 4 d food diary (FD) and assessed the relative validity of intakes of foods and nutrients. We compared means and medians of intakes, and calculated Pearson correlation coefficients and de-attenuated coefficients to assess agreement between the two methods. We also calculated the proportion correctly classified based on the same or adjacent quintile of intake and the proportion of grossly misclassified (extreme quintiles).
Participants (n 128) in the ‘Snart Forældre’ study who had completed the web-based FFQ were invited to participate in the validation study.
Participants in the ‘Snart Forældre’ study, in total ninety-seven women aged 20–42 years.
Reported intakes of dairy products, vegetables and potatoes were higher in the FFQ compared with the FD, whereas reported intakes of fruit, meat, sugar and beverages were lower in the FFQ than in the FD. Overall the de-attenuated correlation coefficients were acceptable, ranging from 0·33 for energy to 0·93 for vitamin D. The majority of the women were classified in the same or adjacent quintile and few women were misclassified (extreme quintiles).
The web-based FFQ performs well for ranking women of reproductive age according to high or low intake of foods and nutrients and, thus, provides a solid basis for investigating associations between diet and fertility.
A New Nordic Diet (NND) was developed in the context of the Danish OPUS Study (Optimal well-being, development and health for Danish children through a healthy New Nordic Diet). Health, gastronomic potential, sustainability and Nordic identity were crucial principles of the NND. The aim of the present study was to investigate the effects of serving NND school meals compared with the usual packed lunches on the dietary intake of NND signature foods. For two 3-month periods, 834 Danish children aged 8–11 years received NND school meals or their usual packed lunches brought from home (control) in random order. The entire diet was recorded over 7 consecutive days using a validated Web-based Dietary Assessment Software for Children. The NND resulted in higher intakes during the entire week (% increase) of root vegetables (116 (95 % CI 1·93, 2·42)), cabbage (26 (95 % CI 1·08, 1·47)), legumes (22 (95 % CI 1·06, 1·40)), herbs (175 (95 % CI 2·36, 3·20)), fresh berries (48 (95 % CI 1·13, 1·94)), nuts and seeds (18 (95 % CI 1·02, 1·38)), lean fish and fish products (47 (95 % CI 1·31, 1·66)), fat fish and fish products (18 (95 % CI 1·02, 1·37)) and potatoes (129 (95 % CI 2·05, 2·56)). Furthermore, there was a decrease in the number of children with zero intakes when their habitual packed lunches were replaced by NND school meals. In conclusion, this study showed that the children increased their intake of NND signature foods, and, furthermore, there was a decrease in the number of children with zero intakes of NND signature foods when their habitual packed lunches were replaced by school meals following the NND principles.
Bias in self-reported dietary intake is important when evaluating the effect of dietary interventions, particularly for intervention foods. However, few have investigated this in children, and none have investigated the reporting accuracy of fish intake in children using biomarkers. In a Danish school meal study, 8- to 11-year-old children (n 834) were served the New Nordic Diet (NND) for lunch. The present study examined the accuracy of self-reported intake of signature foods (berries, cabbage, root vegetables, legumes, herbs, potatoes, wild plants, mushrooms, nuts and fish) characterising the NND. Children, assisted by parents, self-reported their diet in a Web-based Dietary Assessment Software for Children during the intervention and control (packed lunch) periods. The reported fish intake by children was compared with their ranking according to fasting whole-blood EPA and DHA concentration and weight percentage using the Spearman correlations and cross-classification. Direct observation of school lunch intake (n 193) was used to score the accuracy of food-reporting as matches, intrusions, omissions and faults. The reporting of all lunch foods had higher percentage of matches compared with the reporting of signature foods in both periods, and the accuracy was higher during the control period compared with the intervention period. Both Spearman's rank correlations and linear mixed models demonstrated positive associations between EPA+DHA and reported fish intake. The direct observations showed that both reported and real intake of signature foods did increase during the intervention period. In conclusion, the self-reported data represented a true increase in the intake of signature foods and can be used to examine dietary intervention effects.
The OPUS (Optimal well-being, development and health for Danish children through a healthy New Nordic Diet (NND)) School Meal Study investigated the effects on the intake of foods and nutrients of introducing school meals based on the principles of the NND covering lunch and all snacks during the school day in a cluster-randomised cross-over design. For two 3-month periods, 834 Danish children aged 8–11 years from forty-six school classes at nine schools received NND school meals or their usual packed lunches brought from home (control) in random order. The whole diet of the children was recorded over seven consecutive days using a validated Web-based Dietary Assessment Software for Children. The NND resulted in higher intakes of potatoes (130 %, 95 % CI 2·07, 2·58), fish (48 %, 95 % CI 1·33, 1·65), cheese (25 %, 95 % CI 1·15, 1·36), vegetables (16 %, 95 % CI 1·10, 1·21), eggs (10 %, 95 % CI 1·01, 1·19) and beverages (6 %, 95 % CI 1·02, 1·09), and lower intakes of bread (13 %, 95 % CI 0·84, 0·89) and fats (6 %, 95 % CI 0·90, 0·98) were found among the children during the NND period than in the control period (all, P< 0·05). No difference was found in mean energy intake (P= 0·4), but on average children reported 0·9 % less energy intake from fat and 0·9 % higher energy intake from protein during the NND period than in the control period. For micronutrient intakes, the largest differences were found for vitamin D (42 %, 95 % CI 1·32, 1·53) and iodine (11 %, 95 % CI 1·08, 1·15) due to the higher fish intake. In conclusion, the present study showed that the overall dietary intake at the food and nutrient levels was improved among children aged 8–11 years when their habitual packed lunches were replaced by school meals following the principles of the NND.
Web-based Dietary Assessment Software for Children (WebDASC) was developed to estimate dietary intake in a school meal intervention study among 8- to 11-year-old Danish children. The present study validates self-reported fruit, juice and vegetable (FJV) intakes in 8- to 11-year-old children by comparing intake with plasma carotenoid concentration, and by comparing the reported FJV intake to actually eaten FJV, as observed by a photographic method. A total of eighty-one children, assisted by parents, reported their diet for seven consecutive days. For the same five schooldays as they reported their diet, the children's school lunch was photographed and weighed before and after eating. In the week after the diet reporting, fasting blood samples were taken. Self-reported intake of FJV and estimated intake of carotenoids were compared with plasma carotenoid concentration. Accuracy of self-reported food and FJV consumption at school lunch was measured in terms of matches, intrusion, omission and faults, when compared with images and weights of lunch intake. Self-reported intake of FJV was significantly correlated with the total carotenoid concentration (0·58) (P< 0·01). Fruit and juice consumption showed higher correlations than vegetables with plasma carotenoid concentration (0·38 and 0·42 v. 0·33) (P< 0·01). A total of 82 % of the participants fell into the same or adjacent quartiles when cross-classified by FJV intake and carotenoids biomarkers. WebDASC attained 82 % reporting matches overall and a higher percentage match for reporting fruits compared with beverages. The present study indicated that WebDASC can be used to rank 8- to 11-year-old Danish children according to their intake of FJV overall and at school meals.
To determine the relative validity of the pre-coded food diary applied in the Danish National Survey of Dietary Habits and Physical Activity.
A cross-over study among seventy-two adults (aged 20 to 69 years) recording diet by means of a pre-coded food diary over 4 d and a 4 d weighed food record. Intakes of foods and drinks were estimated, and nutrient intakes were calculated. Means and medians of intake were compared, and cross-classification of individuals according to intake was performed. To assess agreement between the two methods, Pearson and Spearman's correlation coefficients and weighted kappa coefficients were calculated.
Validation study of the pre-coded food diary against a 4 d weighed food record.
Intakes of cereals and vegetables were higher, and intakes of fruit, coffee and tea were lower, in the weighed food record compared with the food diary. Intakes of nutrients were grossly the same in the two methods, except for protein, where a higher intake was recorded in the weighed record. In general, moderate agreement between the two methods was found.
Participants were classified moderately correct according to food and nutrient intakes assessed in the pre-coded food diary; however values of absolute food intakes should be used and interpreted with caution. Improvement of the methods to estimate portion size may increase the accuracy of the dietary intake estimates.
To compare dietary patterns and food and macronutrient intakes among adults in three ethnic groups in rural Kenya.
In the present cross-sectional study, dietary intake was estimated in adult volunteers using two non-consecutive interactive 24 h recalls. Dietary patterns were assessed from the number of meals and snacks per day and from the food items and major food groups registered, and their contribution to energy intake (EI) was calculated. Anthropometric values were measured and sociodemographic data obtained using a questionnaire.
A cross-sectional study was conducted in the Bondo, Kitui and Transmara districts of rural Kenya. A high prevalence of food insecurity in Kenya underlines the importance of describing the dietary patterns and intakes in different Kenyan ethnic groups.
A total of 1163 (61 % women) adult Luo, Kamba and Maasai, with a mean age of 38·6 (range: 18–68) years, volunteered to participate.
Dietary patterns and food groups contributing to EI differed significantly among the ethnic groups. Mean EI ranged from 5·8 to 8·6 MJ/d among women and from 7·2 to 10·5 MJ/d among men, with carbohydrates contributing between 55·7 % and 74·2 % and fat contributing between 14·5 % and 30·2 % of total EI. Mean protein intake ranged from 0·72 to 1·3 g/kg per d, and EI:BMR ratio ranged between 1·1 and 1·6 in both sexes, and was highest among the Luo. Prevalence of underweight (BMI < 18·5 kg/m2) was 13·7 %, 20·5 % and 24·2 % in the Luo, Kamba and Maasai, respectively.
The degree of food insecurity measured as a degree of undernutrition and as dietary patterns differed considerably among the ethnic groups. The Maasai and Kamba in particular were exposed to food insecurity.
The main purpose of the study was to investigate the feasibility of using workplaces to increase the fruit consumption of participants by increasing fruit availability and accessibility by a minimal fruit programme. Furthermore, it was investigated whether a potential increase in fruit intake would affect vegetable, total energy and nutrient intake.
A 5-month, controlled, workplace study where workplaces were divided into an intervention group (IG) and a control group (CG). At least one piece of free fruit was available per person per day in the IG. Total fruit and dietary intake was assessed, using two 24 h dietary recalls at baseline and at endpoint.
Eight Danish workplaces were enrolled in the study. Five workplaces were in the IG and three were in the CG.
One hundred and twenty-four (IG, n 68; CG, n 56) healthy, mainly normal-weight participants were recruited.
Mean daily fruit intake increased significantly from baseline to endpoint only in the IG by 112(se 35) g. In the IG, mean daily intake of added sugar decreased significantly by 10·7(se 4·4) g, whereas mean daily intake of dietary fibre increased significantly by 3·0(se 1·1) g. Vegetable, total energy and macronutrient intake remained unchanged through the intervention period for both groups.
The present study showed that it is feasible to increase the average fruit intake at workplaces by simply increasing fruit availability and accessibility. Increased fruit intake possibly substituted intake of foods containing added sugar. In this study population the increased fruit intake did not affect total energy intake.
To study the association between diet quality and the new health messages in the Danish Dietary Guidelines 2005, i.e. ‘Eat a varied diet’, ‘Engage in regular physical activity’ and ‘Maintain a healthy body weight’.
The study was cross-sectional, comprising a random sample of 3151 Danish adults aged 18–75 years. Dietary intake was estimated using a 7 d pre-coded food diary. Information on social background, leisure-time physical activity, height, body weight and intention to eat healthily was obtained by in-person interviews. Logistic regression models were used to explore the independent effects of energy intake, leisure-time physical activity, food variety, BMI, age, gender, education, household income, location of residence and intention to eat healthily on the likelihood to have high diet quality measured by an index based on the intake of dietary fibre and saturated fat.
Greater food variety (OR = 1·32 for women, 1·13 for men), high leisure-time physical activity (OR = 2·20 for women, 1·91 for men), frequent intentions to eat healthily (OR = 8·19 for women, 5·40 for men) and low energy intake (OR=0·78 for women, 0·85 for men) were significantly associated with high diet quality. For women education was positively associated with diet quality. The study did not demonstrate any association between BMI and diet quality.
The health behaviours ‘Eat a varied diet’ and ‘Engage in regular physical activity’ were positively associated with healthy eating. The dietary habits reported were strongly influenced by personal intentions. Thus, the biggest challenge for public health nutritionists will be to reach non-compliers who seldom have intentions to eat healthily.
The aim of the present study was to assess if a simple dietary quality index (SDQI) is a useful indicator for nutritional quality in the Danish diet. Data from the Danish National Dietary Survey 2000–2 for adults (n 3151; age 18–75 years) were used to construct an SDQI based on the intake of dietary fibre and saturated fat. The SDQI was used to rank the individuals into three subgroups: the 25 % closest in meeting the recommended intakes of saturated fat and dietary fibre (compliers), the 25 % furthest away (non-compliers) and the 50 % in between (intermediates). Significant differences in food and nutrient intake between these subgroups were identified by intakes of food groups and intakes of nutrients followed by non-parametric tests. Compared with the Nordic Nutrition Recommendations 2004 and the Danish Dietary Guidelines 2005, compliers had a significantly better nutrient profile than intermediates and non-compliers, as the diet of compliers contained more whole-grain cereals, fruits, vegetables and fish, and more frequently low-fat dairy products, lean meats and boiled potatoes. The diet of all subgroups, especially non-compliers, had a high content of nutrient-poor, energy-dense foods, for example, salty snacks, confectionery, and beverages, for example, soft drinks and alcohol. The SDQI is a simple and useful tool to characterise the diet quality of Danish adults.
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