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Open AccessArticle

Analysis of the National Adult Nutrition Survey (Ireland) and the Food4Me Nutrition Survey Databases to Explore the Development of Food Labelling Portion Sizes for the European Union

Institute of Food & Health, University College Dublin, D04V1W8 Dublin, Ireland
School of Food and Nutritional Sciences, University College Cork, T12Y337 Cork, Ireland
Molecular Nutrition Unit, Center of Life and Food Sciences Weihenstephan, Technische Universität München, D-85354 Freising, Germany
Department of Nutrition and Dietetics, Harokopio University, 17671 Athens, Greece
Department of Nutrition, Food Science and Physiology, Center for Nutrition Research, University of Navarra, 31009 Pamplona, Spain
Department of Human Biology, NUTRIM, School for Nutrition and Translational Research in Metabolism, Maastricht University Medical Centre, 6200MD Maastricht, The Netherlands
Department of Health and Nutritional Sciences, Institute of Technology Sligo, F92YW50 Sligo, Ireland
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Nutrients 2019, 11(1), 6;
Received: 17 October 2018 / Revised: 21 November 2018 / Accepted: 14 December 2018 / Published: 20 December 2018
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Food Portion Size in Relation to Diet and Health)
The present study set out to explore the option of developing food portion size for nutritional labelling purposes using two European Union (EU) dietary surveys. The surveys were selected as they differed in (a) methodologies (food diary versus food frequency questionnaire), (b) populations (Irish National Adult Nutrition Survey (NANS) versus a seven-country survey based on the pan EU study Food4Me), (c) food quantification (multiple options versus solely photographic album) and (d) duration (4 consecutive days versus recent month). Using data from these studies, portion size was determined for 15 test foods, where portion size was defined as the median intake of a target food when consumed. The median values of the portion sizes derived from both the NANS and Food4Me surveys were correlated (r = 0.823; p < 0.00) and the mean of the two survey data sets were compared to US values from the Recognized as Customarily Consumed (RACC) database. There was very strong agreement across all food categories between the averaged EU and the US portion size (r = 0.947; p < 0.00). It is concluded that notwithstanding the variety of approaches used for dietary survey data in the EU, the present data supports using a standardized approach to food portion size quantification for food labelling in the EU. View Full-Text
Keywords: food labelling; portion size; RACC; NANS; Food4Me food labelling; portion size; RACC; NANS; Food4Me
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Gibney, M.J.; O’Sullivan, A.; Flynn, A.; Walton, J.; Daniel, H.; Manios, Y.; Martinez, A.; Saris, W.H.M.; Gibney, E.R.; Uzhova, I. Analysis of the National Adult Nutrition Survey (Ireland) and the Food4Me Nutrition Survey Databases to Explore the Development of Food Labelling Portion Sizes for the European Union. Nutrients 2019, 11, 6.

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