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Validation Information: FFQ (Qatar)

Bawadi 2021

Validity and Reproducibility of a Food Frequency Questionnaire to Assess Macro and Micro-Nutrient Intake among a Convenience Cohort of Healthy Adult Qataris

This study aimed at developing a valid culture-sensitive quantitative food frequency questionnaire (FFQ) for Qatari adults. A convenient sample of healthy Qataris (n = 107) were recruited from family members of Qatar University students. The Diet History Questionnaire II of the US National Cancer Institute was translated to Arabic language, back-translated to English, pilot tested, and then modified accordingly to be used in Qatari setting. Participants were asked to complete the translated version of the FFQ. This FFQ was then validated against three 24 h diet recall (24 hDR) including a weekend day. Participants were asked to complete the FFQ again after one-month period to measure its repeatability. Dietary data were analyzed using the dietary analysis software ESHA. The validity and reliability of FFQ were assessed by comparing the median intake of nutrients and foods and by calculating the Pearson correlation coefficients. The median nutrient intakes assessed by the second FFQ were higher than that reported in the baseline FFQ1 except for fat. The percentage of increase varies between 1.5% and 96%. Results of the second FFQ indicated an overestimation of intake for most nutrients (macro and micro). Macronutrient intakes assessed by the two FFQ and 24 hDR were strongly correlated. The correlation coefficients for micronutrient intakes between FFQ2 and 24hDR were lower than that of the two FFQs except for calcium (r = 0.55) and sodium (r = 0.643). They ranged from (−0.17) for fluorine to (0.643) for sodium. The agreement rates for classifying macronutrient intakes into same or adjacent quartile were between 79.4% and 100% for the two FFQs and between 71% and 100% for the second FFQ and 24hDR. The reported consumption of food groups estimated by FFQ2 was significantly higher than that reported by FFQ1. In conclusion, the developed FFQ was sufficiently valid to assess energy and macronutrients but not micronutrients. The reliability was adequate for most nutrients.

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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
Food models and standard measuring tools were used to help participants in estimating the consumed portion size. Participants’ responses were converted into average daily intakes.
Reporting Method info
Format info
Supplements Measured
Not Reported
Administration Method info
Interviewer-administered:FFQ data collection was done via face-to-face interviews conducted by trained nutritionist to help participants complete the questionnaire.

Study Information

Study Location
Associated Nutrient Database
Not Reported
Comparator Validated Against
24hr Recall


Sample Size
Age of Population

Mean: 33years

Other Notable Characteristics
A convenient sample of healthy Qataris were recruited from family members of Qatar University students.

Total number of nutrients validated: 30 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: 10
  • Micronutrients: 20
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 Both Energy (kcal) -0.42% (Median) 0.974(P) 98.13 4
Protein (g) 3.49% (Median) 0.610(P) 46.73 4
Fat (g) -8.46% (Median) 0.799(P) 62.62 4
Saturated fat (g) -21.82% (Median) 0.670(P) 39.25 4
Monosaturated fat (g) -51.70% (Median) 0.617(P) 42.06 4
Polysaturated fat (g) -76.56% (Median) 0.610(P) 38.32 4
Carbohydrate (g) 7.05% (Median) 0.803(P) 56.07 4
Fibre (g) 24.87% (Median) 0.545(P) 38.32 4
Sodium (mg) -9.99% (Median) 0.643(P) 49.53 4
Calcium (mg) 10.00% (Median) 0.550(P) 40.19 4
Iron (mg) -12.27% (Median) −0.095(P) 23.81 4
Zinc (mg) -14.04% (Median) 0.094(P) 25.96 4
Folate -30.71% (Median) −0.135(P) 25 4
Vitamin C (mg) 19.87% (Median) 0.176(P) 28.97 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.

Bawadi H, Akasheh RT, Kerkadi A, Haydar S, Tayyem R, Shi Z. Validity and Reproducibility of a Food Frequency Questionnaire to Assess Macro and Micro-Nutrient Intake among a Convenience Cohort of Healthy Adult Qataris. Nutrients. 2021;13(6):10.