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Int J Epidemiol. 1991 Dec;20(4):906-12.

Validation of a semiquantitative food frequency questionnaire developed in Denmark.

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Danish Cancer Registry, Institute of Cancer Epidemiology, Danish Cancer Society, Copenhagen.


In 1989, a self-administered food frequency questionnaire, including 92 food items and 40 portion-size photographs, was validated against two times seven days of weighed diet records. A total of 144 subjects, aged 40-64 years, from the general population in Copenhagen were included. Correlations between mean calorie-adjusted intakes from the two-week diet records and the food-frequency questionnaire ranged from 0.27 for vitamin A to 0.71 for calcium. In general, higher correlation coefficients were observed for men than for women. On average, about 70% of subjects were classified in the same (+/- 1) quintile in the food frequency questionnaire and the diet records. Of those subjects belonging to the lowest quintile, estimated from the diet records, 42% fell in the same quintile and 68% into the lowest two quintiles in the food frequency questionnaire. Findings were similar for the upper tail of the distribution. Gross misclassification, observed in the highest and lowest quintile, was found for 4% and 7% of the subjects, respectively. It is concluded that this food frequency questionnaire is a useful instrument for categorizing individuals according to their intake of nutrients and energy.

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