The validity of a self-administered diet history questionnaire has been estimated using as the reference data the mean of three 4-day diet records collected over the year prior to the administration of the questionnaire, in 1985-1986. Subjects were women ages 45-70 years, participants in the Women's Health Trial Feasibility Study, a multi-center clinical trial in which some women were randomized to be taught to adopt and maintain a low-fat diet, while others maintained their usual diet. The questionnaire produced group mean nutrient estimates closely approximating the values obtained by three 4-day records, e.g. in the usual-diet group, 37.7% of calories from fat by both food records and by questionnaire, and in the low-fat group, 21.3% of calories from fat by food records and 23.7% of calories from fat by questionnaire. Correlations between questionnaire and diet records for per cent of calories from fat were 0.67 and 0.65 respectively in the two groups; most correlations were in the 0.5-0.6 range, and were similar to those achievable by a single 4-day food record.