Dietary Methodology and Applied Food Composition Data: Producing High-Quality Data in Food-Based Randomized Controlled Trials


Many diet–disease relationships exist for chronic disease prevention and management as founded in studies of people with type 2 diabetes mellitus, high blood pressure, and cardiovascular disease. The importance of the dietary data within these studies is vital to creating accurate information about the relationships between the reported food intakes and the health outcomes that were measured in the study participants. For some chronic diseases, this intake data needs to be described at a food level while for other diseases nutrient descriptions are better suited. Our case study addresses the use of dietary methodology within randomized controlled trial study designs with a focus on weight management for preventing chronic diseases such as type 2 diabetes mellitus, high blood pressure, and cardiovascular disease. This case study provides an overview of a food-based clinical trial and the different types of dietary methods that could be used. It outlines what we have learnt as a research team in relation to selecting the best method, ensuring that we collect high-quality research data and choose the most appropriate form of analysis, whether a food or a nutrient-based outcome is needed for the study. It provides an overview of the many factors to consider when working with food data and the importance of verifying the quality of the data that is collected so that the researchers can ensure that accurate outcomes are reported.

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