How does the quality of surveys for nutrient intake adequacy assessment compare across Europe? A scoring system to rate the quality of data in such surveys

Alicia García-Álvarez, Maria Blanquer, Lourdes Ribas-Barba, Trudy M. A. Wijnhoven, Garden Tabacchi, Mirjana Gurinovic, Lluís Serra-Majem
2009 British Journal of Nutrition  
Research was conducted within the EURopean micronutrient RECommendations Aligned (EURRECA) Network of Excellence, to find the best practice in assessing nutrient intakes. Objectives include: to search for and use data on individual nutrient intake adequacy (NIA) assessment collected in twenty-eight European countries and the four European Free Trade Association countries; to design and test innovative tools for data quality analysis. The information was obtained using the method described by
more » ... hod described by Blanquer et al. in the present issue. The best-practice criteria were devised to select the most appropriate survey in each country. Then a survey quality scoring system was developed in consultation with experts and tested on these surveys. Weights were allocated according to a variable priority order agreed by consultation. The thirty-two countries yielded twenty-four national surveys (eight countries excluded). Data collection techniques: eleven countries/surveys used personal interviews only; six used combinations of techniques. Dietary assessment methods: two used repeated 24 h recalls only; eleven used combinations. NIA assessment methods: two used probabilistic approach and SD/Z-scores only; eleven used comparison with estimated average requirements/RDA only. Countries were ranked according to the survey quality scoring, but careful interpretation is needed because of incomplete data from some surveys; bearing this in mind, the information quality is high in 37·5 % countries, medium in 50·0 % and low in 12·5 %. Although there is room for improvement and caution should be taken when drawing conclusions and recommendations from these results, the lessons learned and tools developed at this first attempt form the basis for future work within the EURRECA framework for aligning European micronutrient recommendations.
doi:10.1017/s0007114509990584 pmid:19594964 fatcat:hkkzngxm6ncx3hlg63jbupabo4