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Validation Information: Calcium Intake Questionnaire

Nelson 1988

Calcium intake in the elderly: validation of a dietary questionnaire

Epidemiological studies of calcium and osteoporosis have been hampered by the lack of a suitable tool for assessing calcium intake. This report describes a new frequency and amount questionnaire for measuring present and past calcium intake in the elderly. The validity of the questionnaire was tested against two commonly used standards of dietary assessment, five-day duplicate diets and seven-day weighed dietary inventories. The resulting correlation coefficients were, respectively, r=0.76 and r=0.69, while that for repeatability was r=0.84. Furthermore, the questionnaire categorized subjects into thirds of the distribution of intake with almost no gross misclassification. It is suggested that the present findings may be extended to the majority of normal, healthy elderly subjects, implying wide application for the questionnaire in the assessment of calcium intake in the elderly

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Validation Information

Year of Publication

Tool Information

Dietary Exposure Measured
Tool Type
Food Frequency Questionnaire
Timeframe Tool Measures info
1 Year (though guidance to calculating intakes per day are also provided)
Portion Size Measures info
Colour photographs portraying three serving sizes of each food and drink.
Reporting Method info
Usual; Retrospective
Format info
Supplements Measured
Not Reported
Administration Method info

Study Information

Study Location
Essex, England
Associated Nutrient Database
McCance & Widdowson's The Composition of Foods, 4th edition
Comparator Validated Against
Weighed Food Diary


Sample Size
Age of Population

Range: 65-74 years

Female Only
Other Notable Characteristics
Healthy elderly residents.

Total number of nutrients validated: 1 info

Not all of the nutrients validated in the validation studies are included in the table below, as statistical data was only selected to be displayed for a number of nutrients, this included:

  • Energy
  • Fat
  • Saturated Fat
  • Mono-unsaturated Fat
  • Poly-unsaturated Fat
  • Carbohydrates
  • Protein
  • Sugar
  • Non‐starch polysaccharides(NSP)
  • Sodium
  • Calcium
  • Iron
  • Zinc
  • Retinol
  • Folate
  • Folic Acid
  • Vitamin B12
  • Vitamin C
  • Fruit & Vegetables
  • Urinary Nitrogen

To find information on the other validated nutrients please read the validation study.

  • Macronutrients: 0
  • Micronutrients: 1
Comparator Lifestage Sex Nutrient Measured info Mean Difference Standard Deviation info Correlation Coefficient info Cohen's Kappa Coefficient Percentage Agreement Percentage Agreement Categories info Lower Limits of Agreement Upper Limits of Agreement
Weighed Food Diary Elderly Female Only Calcium (mg) -125 217.3 0.69 (NR) 47 3 -559.6 309.6

Some results have been calculated using statistical techniques based on the published data.

For further information on statistical terms click on Statistical tests used in validation studies

All correlations coefficients in the table are unadjusted unless stated otherwise. For adjusted correlation coefficients and other statistical methods used in the study e.g. paired t-tests, please read the validation articles.

  • # Adjusted
  • † Energy adjusted.
  • ‡ For loge-transformed, energy-adjusted nutrient intakes.
  • ^ Adjacent included.
  • ᵟ Participants provided identical responses.
  • (w) = Weighted.

Nelson M, Hague GF, Cooper C, Bunker VW. Calcium intake in the elderly: validation of a dietary questionnaire. Journal of Human Nutrition and Dietetics. 1988 Apr 1;1(2):115-27.