Biomarkers of diet and nutritional health

Tracy E. Crane, Cynthia Thomson

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingChapter

2 Scopus citations


Dietary biomarkers are biological specimens that may serve as functional, biochemical, or clinical indicators of nutrient intake or metabolism. The majority of research studies utilize self-report methodologies for the measurement of diet. These include food diaries, repeat 24-h recalls, and food frequency questionnaires. While collecting dietary data by self-report can be cost-effective, it is subject to misreporting. Dietary biomarkers serve as objective measures of nutrient intake and metabolism and markedly increase the validity of diet-disease-related associations, while reducing participant bias due to misreporting. Dietary biomarkers can be classified into one of four groups: recovery, predictive, concentration, and replacement biomarkers. A variety of specimens can be collected for the measurement of dietary biomarkers, including but not limited to sweat, blood, urine, and exhaled gases.This chapter describes various methods for collecting self-reported diet information as well as the different classifications of dietary biomarkers, their relationship to health risk, as well as important considerations when collecting and analyzing biosamples.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationBiological Measures of Human Experience across the Lifespan
Subtitle of host publicationMaking Visible the Invisible
PublisherSpringer International Publishing
Number of pages23
ISBN (Electronic)9783319441030
ISBN (Print)9783319441016
StatePublished - Jan 1 2016


  • 24-h recall
  • Carotenoids
  • Doubly labeled water
  • Energy intake
  • Food diary
  • Food frequency questionnaire
  • Metabolomics
  • Nutrition
  • Urinary nitrogen

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • General Social Sciences


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