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Disaggregating composite food codes in the UK National Diet and Nutrition Survey food composition databank



To disaggregate composite food codes used in the UK National Diet and Nutrition Survey (NDNS) into their individual food components in order to provide a more complete estimate of intake at the individual food level.


A total of 3216 composite food codes from the NDNS food composition databank were subject to disaggregation. The main food components used were meat, fish, fruit, vegetables and cheese, which were further divided into 26 subcategories.


It was shown that previous determination of meat containing composite food codes provided an overestimate of meat intake and underestimate of additional components such as fruit and vegetables.


By incorporating disaggregated data into NDNS, variations will be seen in consumption of some main food groups, but these variations may be also attributable to trends in consumption.

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This work was carried out as part of the National Diet and Nutrition Survey rolling programme, funded by the Food Standards Agency and Department of Health, London, UK.

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Correspondence to E Fitt.

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The authors declare no conflict of interest.

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Contributors: AMS was responsible for initiating the study and securing funding. TNM carried out the primary data collection. CP, CR, MF-W and GS offered support and guidance throughout the project. EF was responsible for supervising and coordinating the project and writing the paper. All authors contributed to the study design and approved the final draft before publication.

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Fitt, E., Mak, T., Stephen, A. et al. Disaggregating composite food codes in the UK National Diet and Nutrition Survey food composition databank. Eur J Clin Nutr 64 (Suppl 3), S32–S36 (2010).

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