Submitted to: Present Knowledge in Nutrition 8th Edition
Publication Type: Book / Chapter
Publication Acceptance Date: April 1, 2001
Publication Date: April 30, 2001
Citation: Holden, J.M., Harnly, J.M., Beecher, G.R. 2001. Food Composition. In: Bowman, B.A., Russell, R.M., editors. Present Knowledge in Nutrition. 8th Edition. Washington, DC: ILSI Press. p. 593-604. Technical Abstract: Knowledge of the composition of foods is essential for the calculation of consumption of nutrients and food components, and for deriving associations between these intakes and health status. All food composition databases maintained by the USDA are available on the Internet www.nal.usda.gov/fnic/foodcomp. A database must be dynamic to keep pace with changes in several scientific fields. A periodic review process is essential since new foods appear, formulations change, new sub-components are identified, and inappropriate data must be culled. New methods and instrumentation may render older data obsolete as do changes in government regulations and nutrition policy. Such a review must also consider several other parameters. Several families of minor food components have been associated with reduced risk of chronic disease(s). Databases of food values for several of these have been assembled or are in development. However the assembly of databases for many of these compounds awaits development of robust analytical techniques and generation of reliable data. Development of partnerships with scientists in several scientific communities has accelerated generation of data and assembly of values into functional databases.