What are Dietary Reference Intakes? Origins, Development & Use (SNP 26)

In Podcasts by Danny LennonLeave a Comment

Note: This episode is one of our Premium-exclusive episodes. To listen to the full episode, you’ll need to be a Premium subscriber and access the episode on the private Premium feed. Otherwise, you can hear a preview of the episode above or on the public feed of the podcast.


Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs) are a set of nutrient reference values, developed in the US, that are used to assess and plan the nutrient intake of healthy individuals. They provide guidelines for the recommended amounts of various nutrients to maintain health and prevent deficiencies or excesses. Different countries may have their own sets of dietary reference values or guidelines that serve similar purposes but may be named differently.

DRIs include several different reference values:

  1. Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA)
  2. Adequate Intake (AI)
  3. Tolerable Upper Intake Level (UL)
  4. Estimated Average Requirement (EAR)

DRIs play a crucial role in nutrition and public health for several reasons. DRIs provide specific recommendations for the intake of essential nutrients, helping individuals and health professionals understand the amounts needed to maintain good health.

By establishing RDAs and ULs, DRIs help prevent nutrient deficiencies and toxicity, ensuring that individuals consume an appropriate range of nutrients.

Governments and health organizations use DRIs to develop public health policies, nutrition programs, and guidelines for food fortification to improve the overall health of populations.

For nutrition professionals, understanding DRIs is essential as it forms the basis for assessing and planning dietary recommendations for individuals and populations.

Episode Host

Danny Lennon has a master’s degree (MSc.) in Nutritional Sciences from University College Cork, and he is the founder of Sigma Nutrition.

Danny is currently a member of the Advisory Board of the Sports Nutrition Association, the global regulatory body responsible for the standardisation of best practice in the sports nutrition profession.

Premium Content

Not a Premium subscriber? Subscribe here!

Leave a Comment