Background: Under- and overreporting of dietary intake in a face-to-face context is related to age, gender and body
mass index. The use of computer technology in dietetic practice is restricted to analysis of nutrient data rather than
assessment of the diet. DietAdvice, a website developed to allow patients with metabolic syndrome to self-report
their dietary intake, has been developed in the Illawarra region of New South Wales, Australia. Patients are recruited
by their general practitioner, and use the website, and the data are electronically fed to a dietitian for an
individualised dietary prescription.
Aim: To describe the reporting status of patients using a pilot test of the website from November 2004 to October
2005, and determine relationships to body mass index, gender and age.
Methods: Reported energy intake (EI) was compared with predicted basal metabolic rate (BMR). Patients were
classified as underreporting if EI : BMR <1.35 and overreporting if EI : BMR >2.4. Chi-square and ordinal regression
analyses were used to determine relationships to patient characteristics.
Results: Two hundred patients were recruited, of whom 57 had missing data or did not complete the assessment.
Of the remaining 143 patients, 32.3% underreported their intakes, 21.7% overreported their intakes, and 46.2% were
on target with their reporting. No relationships were found for age, gender or body mass index.
Conclusion: Findings suggest that computerised dietary assessment may encourage patients to report with less
bias than in a verbal dietary assessment when compared with the literature.