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Validation Information: CADET

Cade 2006

Assessment of diet in young children with an emphasis on fruit and vegetable intake: using CADET – Child and Diet Evaluation Tool

Objectives: To develop a concise, simple tool for use by non-specialists to assess diet in children aged 3-7 years attending primary schools.

Design: A 24-hour food tick list covering all aspects of the diet and with a focus on fruit and vegetable consumption was developed. This was compared against a 24-hour semi-weighed food diary obtained for the same day as the tick list.

Setting: Six primary schools with a range of socio-economic and ethnic backgrounds from a large city in the north of England (Leeds).

Participants: One hundred and eighty children returned completed packs of information; a response rate of 77% of those who were willing to take part, 48% of those approached.

Results: On average, 2.4 items of fruit including juice (2.1 items as 5-a-day count) were eaten and 1.6 items of vegetables (excluding potato). Twenty-seven per cent and 36% of boys and 23% and 24% of girls reported not eating any fruit or vegetables, respectively, on the recording day. Correlations comparing the diary and tick list were high for both foods (range r = 0.44 to 0.89) and nutrients (range r = 0.41 to 0.68). The level of misclassification was much less than would be expected by chance. Parent and teacher evaluation of the tick list was very positive. Parents felt the tick list was easy and quick to complete.

Conclusion: The Child and Diet Evaluation Tool (CADET) tick list has been used successfully for rapid collection of food and nutrient information from children aged 3-7 years from diverse social and ethnic backgrounds. The tool has performed better than many food-frequency questionnaires in comparison to a food diary.

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Validation Information

Year of Publication

Tool Information

Dietary Exposure Measured
Full Nutrient, Food Groups
Tool Type
Food Checklist
Timeframe Tool Measures info
1 Day
Portion Size Measures info
Based on mean food intakes from the National Diet and Nutrition Survey (NDNS) results for children. The portion sizes were age- and sex-specific.
Reporting Method info
Prospective; Retrospective
Format info
Supplements Measured
Administration Method info
The tool has three parts. Part 1 - by-proxy: parent or caregiver. Part 2 - by-proxy: trained fieldworker, dinner supervisor or parent classroom assistant. Part 3 - self completion with assistance from the classroom teacher.

Study Information

Study Location
Leeds, England
Associated Nutrient Database
DANTE (Diet And Nutrition Tool for Evaluation)
Comparator Validated Against
Weighed Food Diary


Sample Size
Age of Population

Range: 3-7 years

Mean: 4.8

Other Notable Characteristics

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: 5
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 Children Both Energy (kcal) 237 451 0.43 (S) -665 1139
Energy (kJ) 1000 2000 0.43 (S) -3000 5000
Protein (g) 8 16 0.41 (S) -24 40
Fat (g) 6 20 0.46 (S) -35 48
Saturated Fat (g) 1 9 0.41 (S) -18 19
MUFA (g) 1 7 0.43 (S) -12 14
PUFA (g) -0.1 4 0.32 (S) -8 8
Carbohydrates (g) 40 71 0.41 (S) -102 182
Fibre (NSP) (g) 2 3 0.59 (S) -5 8
Calcium (mg) 9 341.0 0.43 (S) -673.0 691.0
Iron (mg) 1.4 3.3 0.43 (S) -5.2 8.0
Folate (µg) 23 70.5 0.52 (S) -118.0 164.0
Vitamin C (mg) 6.5 72.55 0.46 (S) -138 150
Fruit (g) 72 0.52 (S) -264 336
Vegetables (g) -27 0.56 (S) -135 81
Fruit and Vegetables (g) 45 0.4 (S) -327 417

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.

Cade JE, Frear L, Greenwood DC. Assessment of diet in young children with an emphasis on fruit and vegetable intake: using CADET–Child and Diet Evaluation Tool. Public health nutrition. 2006 Jun 1;9(04):501-8.