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Nordic Nutrition Recommendations 2012. Part 1

Summary, principles and use

image of Nordic Nutrition Recommendations 2012. Part 1

The Nordic countries have collaborated in setting guidelines for dietary composition and recommended intakes of nutrients for several decades through the joint publication of the Nordic Nutrition Recommendations (NNR). The 5th edition, the NNR 2012, gives Dietary Reference Values (DRVs) for nutrient intakes, but more emphasis than in earlier editions has been put on evaluating scientific evidence for the role played by dietary patterns and food groups that could contribute to the prevention of the major dietrelated chronic diseases. A Nordic perspective has been accounted for in setting the recommendations. The NNR 2012 has used an evidencebased and transparent approach in assessing associations between dietary patterns, foods and nutrients and specific health outcomes. Systematic reviews (SRs) form the basis for the recommendations of several nutrients and topics, while a less stringent update has been done for others. SRs and individual chapters have been peer reviewed. The draft chapters were also subject to an open public consultation. The present publication contains three parts: a summary of the recommendations, background and principles for the derivation of DRVs and use of the NNR. The documentation of the scientific basis for individual nutrients and topics will be included in a subsequent publication.

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Principles and background of the Nordic Nutrition Recommendations

The Nordic Nutrition Recommendations (NNR) constitute the scientific basis for the planning of diets for population groups and for the development of food-based dietary guidelines in the Nordic countries. The recommendations serve as a basis for assessing nutrient intakes by groups of healthy individuals and for developing national and regional nutrition policies, nutritional educational programs, food regulations, and action programmes. The NNR are primarily valid for groups of healthy individuals with various levels of physical activity (excluding competitive athletes). For individuals with diseases and other groups with special needs, the dietary composition and energy content might have to be adjusted accordingly. Based on current scientific knowledge, the NNR give values for the intake of, and balance between, individual nutrients that are adequate for development and optimal function and that reduce the risk of developing certain diet-related diseases. If a diet provides enough food to cover the energy requirements, complies with the ranges for distribution of energy from macronutrients, and includes foods from all food groups, the requirements for practically all nutrients will be met. Exceptions might be vitamin D, iron, iodine, and folate in certain subgroups of the population or during certain life-stages.

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