Novel dietary intake assessment in populations with poor literacy

Asvini Subasinghe, Amanda Gay Thrift, Roger George Evans, Simin Arabshahi, Suresh Oduru, Kamakshi Kartik, Kartik Kalyanram, Karen Zell Walker

Research output: Contribution to journalArticleResearchpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


BACKGROUND AND OBJECTIVES: Cultural and/or environmental barriers make the assessment of dietary intake in rural populations challenging. We aimed to assess the accuracy of a meal recall questionnaire, adapted for use with impoverished South Indian populations living in rural areas. METHODS AND STUDY DESIGN: Dietary data collected by recall versus weighed meals were compared. Data were obtained from 45 adults aged 19-85 years, living in rural Andhra Pradesh, who were recruited by convenience sampling. Weighed meal records (WMRs) were conducted in the household by a researcher aided by a trained field worker. The following day, field workers conducted a recall interview with the same participant. Eight life size photographs of portions of South Indian foods were created to aid each participant's recall and a database of nutrients was developed to calculate nutrient intake. Pearson correlations were used to assess the strength of associations between intake of energy and nutrients calculated from meal recalls versus WMRs. Least products regression was conducted to examine fixed and proportional bias. Bland-Altman plots were constructed to measure systematic or differential bias. RESULTS: Significant correlations were observed between estimates for energy and nutrients obtained by the two methods (r2=0.19-0.67, p<0.001). No systematic bias was detected by Bland-Altman plots. Recall method underestimated the intake of protein and fat in a manner proportional to the level of intake. CONCLUSIONS: Our culturally adapted meal recall questionnaire provides an accurate measure for assessment of the intake of energy, macronutrients and some micronutrients in rural Indian populations.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)202 - 212
Number of pages11
JournalAsia Pacific Journal of Clinical Nutrition
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2016


  • food recall
  • weighed meal record
  • rural
  • disadvatnage
  • South India

Cite this