Open Access Nutrient intake values (NIVs): A recommended terminology and framework for the derivation of values

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Although most countries and regions around the world set recommended nutrient intake values for their populations, there is no standardized terminology or framework for establishing these standards. Different terms used for various components of a set of dietary standards are described in this paper and a common set of terminology is proposed. The recommended terminology suggests that the set of values be called nutrient intake values (NIVs) and that the set be composed of three different values. The average nutrient requirement (ANR) reflects the median requirement for a nutrient in a specific population. The individual nutrient level (INLx) is the recommended level of nutrient intake for all healthy people in the population, which is set at a certain level x above the mean requirement. For example, a value set at 2 standard deviations above the mean requirement would cover the needs of 98% of the population and would be INL98. The third component of the NIVs is an upper nutrient level (UNL), which is the highest level of daily nutrient intake that is likely to pose no risk of adverse health effects for almost all individuals in a specified life-stage group. The proposed framework for deriving a set of NIVs is based on a statistical approach for determining the midpoint of a distribution of requirements for a set of nutrients in a population (the ANR), the standard deviation of the requirements, and an individual nutrient level that assures health at some point above the mean, e.g., 2 standard deviations. Ideally, a second set of distributions of risk of excessive intakes is used as the basis for a UNL.


Document Type: Research Article

Publication date: March 1, 2007

More about this publication?
  • Established in 1978, the Food and Nutrition Bulletin (FNB) is a peer-reviewed journal published quarterly by the Nevin Scrimshaw International Nutrition Foundation.

    The focus of the journal is to highlight original scientific articles on nutrition research, policy analyses, and state-of-the-art summaries relating to multidisciplinary efforts to alleviate the problems of hunger and malnutrition in the developing world.

    Food and Nutrition Bulletin's 2012 Impact Factor: 2.106

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