GDAs for children

How can the Nutrition Program be used to calculate the GDA for children?

GDAs are guidelines for healthy children about the approximate amount of Calories, fat, saturated fat, carbohydrate, total sugars, protein, fibre, salt and sodium required for a healthy diet. Guideline Daily Amounts for children of different ages were developed in 2005. GDA values used for children are based on Dietary Reference Values for Food Energy and Nutrients for the United Kingdom, published by COMA in 1991 (HMSO, London)

Guideline Daily Amounts Children

Guideline Daily Amounts Children

GDAs for macronutrients for children use percentage food energy rather than total energy since alcohol should not be included in a child’s diet. These are:

  • 35% of food energy from total fat
  •  11% of food energy from saturated fat
  •  50% of food energy from carbohydrate
  •  20% energy from total sugars calculated as described by Rayner et al (2003)
  • GDAs for protein are based on the Reference Nutrient Intakes for protein from COMA (1991)1

  • Fibre: values are based on the mid-point (age 7.5 years) of the 1994 American Health Foundation recommendations. Single values are given for boys and girls for each age group based on both non-starch polysaccharide and AOAC analysed fibre
  • Salt: Recommendations of the Scientific Advisory Committee on Nutrition (2003)3 are used

In the Nutrition Program, there are no figures for children below the age of 5 years as the GDAs do not exist for this age group. You can use Diet Analysis to calculate the contribution that foods make to the diet.

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