High levels of low energy reporting on 24-hour recalls and three questionnaires in an elderly low-socioeconomic status population

J Nutr. 2007 May;137(5):1286-93. doi: 10.1093/jn/137.5.1286.


Studies of low energy reporting in the elderly are limited, yet changes in energy balance and the incidence of chronic disease make this a critical time to assess energy intake in this population. The objective of this study was to assess low energy reporting on 24-h recalls (24HR), a FFQ, a picture sort FFQ (PSFFQ), and a meal pattern questionnaire (MPQ), and to relate low energy reporting status to personal characteristics and dietary characteristics, including the Healthy Eating Index. Monthly 24HR were completed over 6 mo, followed by 3 interviewer-administered questionnaires. The Goldberg equation was used to determine reporting status for the dietary assessment methods among older, rural, low socioeconomic status, white, African American, and Native American men and women. The relations of variables of interest to low energy reporting were considered one at a time and in multiple logistic regression models. The percentage of participants classified as accurate reporters varied from 40% (FFQ) to 63% (PSFFQ) among men and 60% (24HR, PSFFQ, MPQ) to 63% (FFQ) among women; high energy reporting was observed on the MPQ. Low energy reporters on the FFQ tended to be men and to be overweight or obese (P < 0.05). Underreporting seemed to be due to omitting foods from major food groups as well as from omitting discretionary energy foods. There was a high degree of low energy reporting in this population, particularly by men, even with six 24HR.

MeSH terms

  • Aged
  • Aged, 80 and over
  • Black or African American
  • Circadian Rhythm*
  • Diet
  • Energy Metabolism*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Indians, North American
  • Interviews as Topic*
  • Logistic Models
  • Male
  • Mental Recall
  • Models, Biological
  • Obesity / metabolism
  • Overweight / physiology
  • Rural Population
  • Sex Factors
  • Social Class*
  • Surveys and Questionnaires*
  • White People