VNDAC provides a valuable resource for all investigators (both
within Vanderbilt as well as those at other institutions and
organizations globally) who do not have ready access to personnel
with the training and expertise in state-of-the-science nutrition
methodology for obtaining valid and reliable assessment and
analyses of dietary intakes and nutritional status. All services
are tailored to meet the specific needs of the investigator and
The primary objective of the Core is to provide valid, reliable, appropriate and cost effective methods to investigators that facilitate all types of human research (T1, T2 and T3) and study designs. These methods include: 24 hour diet recalls, diet histories, food records/diaries, food frequency questionnaires, observed intakes and weighed intakes of all forms of dietary and nutrient intake (foods, beverages, dietary supplements, liquid nutrition supplements, enteral tube feedings, parenteral support and medications). Secondly, the Nutrition and Diet Assessment Core offers diet, menu and recipe development and analysis. Thirdly, the Nutrition and Diet Assessment Core offers comprehensive assessment of nutritional status and protocol specific nutrition education and counseling. In addition to this technical support, the Nutrition and Diet Assessment Core provides expert advice on the advantages and limitations of the various diet and nutrition related methods to utilize in study design and interventions, as well as training to health care professionals in these methods, analysis and interpretation of results.
The Core provides space, equipment, supplies and personnel for data collection and analysis. Investigators pay a fee-for-service that covers all costs related to the methods chosen. The Core provides these services by experienced registered dietitians and research assistants trained in performing valid and reliable procedures. The Core ensures a high level of quality control not only based on the expertise of the technical staff but also the stringent methods used to evaluate the quality of the data collected and analyses. In addition, the Core routinely surveys its users to make certain appropriate services are being provided and to assess future needs. The Core advisory committee evaluates the need to initiate or discontinue services annually.