Comparison of multiple-pass 24-hour recall estimates of energy intake with total energy expenditure determined by the doubly labeled water method in young children

J Am Diet Assoc. 1996 Nov;96(11):1140-4. doi: 10.1016/S0002-8223(96)00293-3.


Objective: This study determined the accuracy of the multiple-pass 24-hour recall method for estimating energy intake in young children by comparing it with measurements of total energy expenditure made using the doubly labeled water method.

Design: Three multiple-pass 24-hour recalls were obtained over a 14-day period to estimate mean energy intake. Total energy expenditure was measured over the same 14-day period under free-living conditions using the doubly labeled water technique.

Subjects/setting: Twenty-four children between the ages of 4 and 7 years were tested at the General Clinical Research Center/Sims Obesity Nutrition Research Center at the University of Vermont.

Statistical analysis: t Tests, paired t tests, Pearson product-moment correlation coefficients, pairwise comparison to show relative bias and limits of agreement, and regression analysis were used to test the relationships among study variables.

Results: No difference was found between 3-day mean energy intake and total energy expenditure for the group (t = 2.07, P = .65). The correlation between individual measures of energy intake and total energy expenditure was not statistically significant (r = .25, P = .24).

Conclusions: Data from 3 days of multiple-pass 24-hour recalls were sufficient to make valid group estimates of energy intake. The method was not precise for individual measurements of energy intake.

Publication types

  • Comparative Study
  • Research Support, Non-U.S. Gov't
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, Non-P.H.S.
  • Research Support, U.S. Gov't, P.H.S.

MeSH terms

  • Body Composition
  • Body Mass Index
  • Carbon Dioxide / metabolism
  • Child
  • Child, Preschool
  • Deuterium Oxide
  • Diet Records*
  • Eating*
  • Electric Impedance
  • Energy Intake*
  • Energy Metabolism*
  • Female
  • Humans
  • Interviews as Topic
  • Isotope Labeling
  • Male
  • Mental Recall*
  • Oxygen Isotopes


  • Oxygen Isotopes
  • Carbon Dioxide
  • Deuterium Oxide