Updated folate data in the Dutch Food Composition Database and implications for intake estimates
AbstractBackground and objective: Nutrient values are influenced by the analytical method used. Food folate measured by high performance liquid chromatography (HPLC) or by microbiological assay (MA) yield different results, with in general higher results from MA than from HPLC. This leads to the question of how to deal with different analytical methods in compiling standardised and internationally comparable food composition databases? A recent inventory on folate in European food composition databases indicated that currently MA is more widely used than HPCL. Since older Dutch values are produced by HPLC and newer values by MA, analytical methods and procedures for compiling folate data in the Dutch Food Composition Database (NEVO) were reconsidered and folate values were updated. This article describes the impact of this revision of folate values in the NEVO database as well as the expected impact on the folate intake assessment in the Dutch National Food Consumption Survey (DNFCS). Design: The folate values were revised by replacing HPLC with MA values from recent Dutch analyses. Previously MA folate values taken from foreign food composition tables had been recalculated to the HPLC level, assuming a 27% lower value from HPLC analyses. These recalculated values were replaced by the original MAvalues. Dutch HPLC and MAvalues were compared to each other. Folate intake was assessed for a subgroup within the DNFCS to estimate the impact of the update. Results: In the updated NEVO database nearly all folate values were produced by MA or derived from MA values which resulted in an average increase of 24%. The median habitual folate intake in young children was increased by 11-15% using the updated folate values. Conclusion: The current approach for folate in NEVO resulted in more transparency in data production and documentation and higher comparability among European databases. Results of food consumption surveys are expected to show higher folate intakes when using the updated values.
Keywords: analytical method; food composition; NEVO; HPLC; microbiological assay; food intake; food consumption survey; children
(Published: 2 April 2012)
Citation: Food & Nutrition Research 2012. 56: 5449 - DOI: 10.3402/fnr.v56i0.5449
Authors retain copyright of their work, with first publication rights granted to SNF Swedish Nutrition Foundation. Read the full Copyright- and Licensing Statement.