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Validation Information: FFQ (Botswana)

Jackson 2012

Validation and reproducibility of an FFQ for use among adults in Botswana

Objective:To evaluate the validity and reproducibility of a 122-item interviewer-administered quantitative FFQ developed to determine food and nutrient intakes of adults in Botswana.

Design:Relative validity of the FFQ was evaluated by comparing nutrient and food group intakes against four non-consecutive 24 h recalls administered over12 months. The FFQ was repeated after 1 year to assess reproducibility.

Setting:Kanye, Botswana.

Subjects:Seventy-nine adults aged 18–75 years.

Results:Spearman correlation coefficients for the validity of energy-adjusted nutrients ranged from 0.42 (carbohydrate) to 0.49 (protein) for macronutrients and from 0.23 (Fe) to 0.44 (PUFA) for micronutrients. Exact agreement of quartile distribution for nutrients between the FFQ and recalls ranged from 27% to 72%. Weighted kappa values were lowest for retinol (0.13), Fe (0.22) and b-carotene (0.25) and ranged from 0.33 (SFA) to 0.59 (folate) for other nutrients (energy, carbohydrate, protein, fat, Ca and vitamin E). Spearman correlation coefficients between the recalls and FFQ for food groups ranged from 0?18 (dark green leafy and yellow vegetables) to 0?58 (poultry). Reproducibility correlation coefficients (energy-adjusted) varied between 0?39 for retinol and 0?66 for vitamin E, with most values falling between 0?50 and 0?60.

Conclusions:The FFQ had good relative validity for estimating habitual food group and nutrient intakes, but was poor for some micronutrients (Fe, retinol and b-carotene) and foods (fruits and dark green leafy vegetables).

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Validation Information

Year of Publication

Tool Information

Dietary Exposure Measured
Full Nutrient, Food Groups
Tool Type
Food Frequency Questionnaire
Timeframe Tool Measures info
1 Year
Portion Size Measures info
Participants supplied information on portion size using food models, commonly used household utensils, measuring cups and a measuring tape.
Reporting Method info
Usual; Retrospective
Format info
Supplements Measured
Not reported
Administration Method info

Study Information

Study Location
Kanye, Botswana
Associated Nutrient Database
Food-Finder (South African food composition database)
Comparator Validated Against
24hr Recall


Sample Size
Adults; Elderly
Age of Population

Mean (SD): Males: 39.9 (17.4) years; Females: 37.2 (17.4) years

Other Notable Characteristics
Participants were selected from those enrolled in the epidemiological survey of diet and weight status. The final sample consisted of 16 males and 63 females with mixed characteristics of urban and rural settings.

Total number of nutrients validated: 13 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.

  • Energy
  • Macronutrients: 7
  • Micronutrients: 6
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
24hr Recall Adults; Elderly Both Energy (kcal) 167 (Median) 0.51 (S) 0.40 (W) 43 4
Energy (kJ) 698 (Median) 0.51 (S) 0.40 (W) 43 4
Protein (g) 5.3 (Median) 0.46 (S) 0.40 (W) 40 4
Fat (g) 3.9 (Median) 0.41 (S) 0.42 (W) 45 4
Saturated Fat (g) 1.4 (Median) 0.35 (S) 0.33 (W) 35 4
MUFA (g) 1.1 (Median) 0.34 (S) 0.45 (W) 53 4
PUFA (g) 1.0 (Median) 0.43 (S) 0.31 (W) 37 4
Carbohydrates (g) 46 (Median) 0.40 (S) 0.42 (W) 45 4
Fibre (g) -2.9 (Median) 0.40 (S) 0.42 (W) 45 4
Calcium (mg) -22 (Median) 0.34 (S) 0.35 (W) 40 4
Iron (mg) 3.2 (Median) 0.23 (S) 0.22 (W) 35 4
Retinol (µg) 5.2 (Median) 0.22 (S) 0.13 (W) 27 4
Folate (µg) 24 (Median) 0.32 (S) 0.59 (W) 67 4

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.

Jackson MD, Motswagole BS, Kwape LD, Kobue-Lekalake RI, Rakgantswana TB, Mongwaketse T, et al. Validation and reproducibility of an FFQ for use among adults in Botswana. Public health nutrition. 2013;16(11):1995-2004.