How is the adequacy of micronutrient intake assessed across Europe? A systematic literature review.

Fecha de publicación


Adequacy, Adequacy assessment, Dietary intake, Folate, Micronutrient intake y Micronutrients


EURopean micronutrient RECommendations Aligned is a network of excellence funded by the European commission, and established to address the problem of differences between countries in micronutrient recommendations as well as to understand how nutritional information including requirements and adequacy of intake is processed among different population groups. The aims of the present paper were to review the methods used for the adequacy assessment of the intake of six micronutrients of public health concern (vitamin A, folate, vitamin B12, Fe, Zn and iodine) in non-European and European nutrition surveys carried out on the apparently healthy population and to compare in particular the adequacy across surveys for folate intake. A systematic literature review was conducted to identify nutrition surveys that assessed micronutrient intake adequacy. The search yielded 9049 records, out of which 337 were eligible for the selected micronutrients. The majority (83.9 %) of the European surveys compared the adequacy of the nutrient intake against the Recommended Dietary Allowances (RDA); only a few surveys (8.0 %) used the estimated average requirement cut-point method, while none of them used the probability approach. The comparison of folate inadequacy across eight countries revealed that about 25 % of the adult female population had inadequate intakes when judged against the different recommendations used by the respective investigators, but nearly 75 % had inadequate intakes when compared against the estimated average requirement cut-point value of 320 microg/d. The present review showed that different methods were applied across Europe to estimate the adequacy of micronutrient intake, which led to different prevalence estimates of micronutrient inadequacy.