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Am J Epidemiol. 2006 Nov 15;164(10):1012-8. Epub 2006 Aug 28.

Use of itemized Till receipts to adjust for correlated dietary measurement error.

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Biostatistics Unit, Centre for Epidemiology and Biostatistics, University of Leeds, Leeds, United Kingdom.


Recent studies suggest that measurement error in food frequency questionnaires includes a person-specific component correlated with that of other self-reported dietary assessments. Use of biomarkers has been recommended to adequately calibrate dietary assessment tools for unbiased estimation of associations between diet and disease. Data on biomarkers of intake are often collected only in small subsamples, because collection of biomarker data can be expensive and inconvenient for participants. In this paper, the authors propose a novel approach using itemized household grocery till receipts to calibrate dietary assessment. Till receipts are not self-recorded and the data obtained from them are not subject to person-specific bias, but the data need to be supported by self-completed diaries for foods eaten away from home. Till receipts may also prove cheaper to collect in larger samples. The authors discuss the many methodological challenges of using household-level data and discuss how till receipts might be used in practice, with or without the use of biomarkers.

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