International Journal for Vitamin and Nutrition Research. 2011;81(4):256-263
In Europe, micronutrient dietary reference values have been established by (inter)national committees of experts and are used by public health policy decision-makers to monitor and assess the adequacy of diets within population groups. The approaches used to derive dietary reference values (including average requirements) vary considerably across countries, and so far no evidence-based reason has been identified for this variation. Nutrient requirements are traditionally based on the minimum amount of a nutrient needed by an individual to avoid deficiency, and is defined by the body’s physiological needs. Alternatively the requirement can be defined as the intake at which health is optimal, including the prevention of chronic diet-related diseases. Both approaches are confronted with many challenges (e. g., bioavailability, inter and intra-individual variability). EURRECA has derived a transparent approach for the quantitative integration of evidence on Intake-Status-Health associations and/or Factorial approach (including bioavailability) estimates. To facilitate the derivation of dietary reference values, EURopean micronutrient RECommendations Aligned (EURRECA) is developing a process flow chart to guide nutrient requirement-setting bodies through the process of setting dietary reference values, which aims to facilitate the scientific alignment of deriving these values.
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