Data_Sheet_1_A Dietary Assessment Training Course Path: The Italian IV SCAI Study on Children Food Consumption.PDF (159.27 kB)

Data_Sheet_1_A Dietary Assessment Training Course Path: The Italian IV SCAI Study on Children Food Consumption.PDF

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posted on 2021-06-09, 10:53 authored by Aida Turrini, Giovina Catasta, Laura Censi, Francisco Javier Comendador Azcarraga, Laura D'Addezio, Marika Ferrari, Cinzia Le Donne, Deborah Martone, Lorenza Mistura, Antonella Pettinelli, Raffaela Piccinelli, Anna Saba, Stefania Sette, Donatella Barbina, Debora Guerrera, Pietro Carbone, Alfonso Mazzaccara

The eating patterns in a population can be estimated through dietary surveys in which open-ended assessment methods, such as diaries and interviews, or semi-quantitative food frequency questionnaires are administered. A harmonized dietary survey methodology, together with a standardized operational procedure, in conducting the study is crucial to ensure the comparability of the results and the accuracy of information, thus reducing uncertainty and increasing the reliability of the results. Dietary patterns (i) include several target variables (foods, energy and nutrients, other food components), (ii) require several explanatory variables (age, gender, anthropometric measurements, socio-cultural and economic characteristics, lifestyle, preferences, attitudes, beliefs, organization of food-related activities, etc.), and (iii) have impacts in several domains: imbalance diets; acute and chronic exposures affect health, specifically non-communicable diseases; and then sanitary expenditure. On the other hand, food demand has impacts on the food system: production, distribution, and food services system; food wastes and other wastes generated by food-related activities of the households (e.g., packaging disposal) have consequences on the “health of the planet” which in turn can have effects on human health. Harmonization and standardization of measurement methods and procedures in such a complex context require an ad hoc structured information system made by databases (food nomenclatures, portion sizes, food atlas, recipes) and methodological tools (quantification methods, food coding systems, assessment of nutritional status, data processing to extrapolate what we consider validated dietary data). Establishing a community of professionals specialized in dietary data management could lead to build a surveillance system for monitoring eating habits in the short term, thus reducing costs, and to arrange a training re-training system. Creating and maintaining the dietary data managers community is challenging but possible. In this context, the cooperation between the CREA Research Centre for Food and Nutrition and the Italian National Health Institute (ISS) promoted and supported by the Italian Ministry of Health may represent a model of best practice that can ensure a continuous training for the professional community carrying out a nutritional study.