A Semi-Quantitative Food Frequency Questionnaire Validated in Hispanic Infants and Toddlers Aged 0 to 24 Months

Published:February 07, 2017DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jand.2016.12.010

      Abstract

      Background

      There are limited validated food frequency questionnaires (FFQs) for infants and toddlers, most of which were evaluated in Europe or Oceania, and the ones available for use in the United States have important limitations.

      Objective

      Our aim was to assess the validity of an FFQ developed for infants and toddlers.

      Design

      A semi-quantitative FFQ was developed that included 52 food items, their sources, and portion sizes. The FFQ inquired about diets over the previous 7 days. Its validity was assessed in a cross-sectional study. Participants completed the FFQ, followed by a 24-hour recall on two occasions with 1 week between data collection.

      Participants/setting

      A total of 296 caregivers of infants and toddlers aged 0 to 24 months enrolled in the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children, Puerto Rico.

      Main outcome measures

      Intake of nutrients and food groups were averaged for the two FFQs and the two 24-hour food recalls, and adjusted for energy intake.

      Statistical analyses performed

      Spearman correlations were performed for intakes of energy, nutrients, and foods between administrations and between instruments. Correlation coefficients were de-attenuated to account for variation in the 24-hour recalls.

      Results

      A total of 241 participants completed the study. Intake of all nutrients and foods were significantly correlated between FFQs and 24-hour recalls and between the means of FFQs and 24-hour food recalls. The de-attenuated correlation for nutrients between the FFQs and 24-hour recalls ranged from 0.26 (folate) to 0.77 (energy), with a mean correlation of 0.53. The de-attenuated correlation for food groups between the FFQs and 24-hour recalls ranged from 0.28 (sweets) to 0.80 (breast milk), with a mean correlation of 0.55. When analyses were restricted to those consuming foods other than breast milk or formula (n=186), results were similar.

      Conclusions

      This semi-quantitative FFQ is a tool that offers reasonably valid rankings for intake of energy, nutrients, foods, and food groups in this sample of infants and toddlers.

      Keywords

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      Biography

      C. Palacios is an associate professor, Nutrition Program, School of Public Health, Medical Sciences Campus, University of Puerto Rico, San Juan.

      Biography

      O. Sinigaglia is a graduate student, Nutrition Program, School of Public Health, Medical Sciences Campus, University of Puerto Rico, San Juan.

      Biography

      E. M. Ríos is a graduate student, Nutrition Program, School of Public Health, Medical Sciences Campus, University of Puerto Rico, San Juan.

      Biography

      S. Rivas-Tumanyan is an assistant professor in epidemiology and assistant deanship of research, School of Dental Medicine, Medical Sciences Campus, University of Puerto Rico, San Juan.

      Biography

      M. Campos is an associate professor, Center for Clinical Research and Health Promotion, School of Dental Medicine, Medical Sciences Campus, University of Puerto Rico, San Juan.

      Biography

      B. Diaz is an assistant professor, Undergraduate Department, School of Nursing, Medical Sciences Campus, University of Puerto Rico, San Juan.

      Biography

      E. J. Santiago-Rodríguez is a biostatistician, Retrovirus Research Center, Internal Medicine Department, School of Medicine, Universidad Central del Caribe, Bayamon, Puerto Rico.

      Biography

      W. Willett is Fredrick John Stare Professor of Epidemiology and Nutrition, and chair of the Department of Nutrition, Department of Epidemiology, School of Public Health, Harvard University, Boston, MA.