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Review

Food Composition Databases: Does It Matter to Human Health?

1
Mediterranean Institute for Agriculture, Environment and Development, University of Algarve, 8005-139 Faro, Portugal
2
Department of Biotechnology, Faculty of Science and Technology of Sidi Bouzid, University of Kairouan, Sidi Bouzid 9100, Tunisia
3
Department of Food Engineering, Superior Institute of Engineering, University of Algarve, 8005-139 Faro, Portugal
4
FSLab—Food Science Laboratory, Faculty of Sciences and Technology, University of Algarve, 8005-139 Faro, Portugal
5
Unité de Nutrition Humaine, INRAE, Route de Theix, 63122 Saint-Genès-Champanelle, France
*
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Joerg Koenigstorfer
Received: 15 July 2021 / Accepted: 13 August 2021 / Published: 17 August 2021
Food provides humans with more than just energy and nutrients, addressing both vital needs and pleasure. Food habits are determined by a wide range of factors, from sensorial stimuli to beliefs and, once commanded by local and seasonal availability, are nowadays driven by marketing campaigns promoting unhealthy and non-sustainable foodstuffs. Top-down and bottom-up changes are transforming food systems, driven by policies on SDGs and by consumer’s concerns about environmental and health impacts. Food quality, in terms of taste, safety, and nutritional value, is determined by its composition, described in food composition databases (FDBs). FDBs are then useful resources to agronomists, food and mechanical engineers, nutritionists, marketers, and others in their efforts to address at maximum human nutrient needs. In this work, we analyse some relevant food composition databases (viz., purpose, type of data, ease of access, regularity of updates), inspecting information on the health and environmental nexus, such as food origin, production mode as well as nutritional quality. The usefulness and limitations of food databases are discussed regarding what concerns sustainable diets, the food ‘matrix effect’, missing compounds, safe processing, and in guiding innovation in foods, as well as in shaping consumers’ perceptions and food choices. View Full-Text
Keywords: food data; natural substances; health promotion; sustainable foods; national food composition databases; one health food data; natural substances; health promotion; sustainable foods; national food composition databases; one health
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MDPI and ACS Style

Delgado, A.; Issaoui, M.; Vieira, M.C.; Saraiva de Carvalho, I.; Fardet, A. Food Composition Databases: Does It Matter to Human Health? Nutrients 2021, 13, 2816. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nu13082816

AMA Style

Delgado A, Issaoui M, Vieira MC, Saraiva de Carvalho I, Fardet A. Food Composition Databases: Does It Matter to Human Health? Nutrients. 2021; 13(8):2816. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nu13082816

Chicago/Turabian Style

Delgado, Amélia, Manel Issaoui, Margarida C. Vieira, Isabel Saraiva de Carvalho, and Anthony Fardet. 2021. "Food Composition Databases: Does It Matter to Human Health?" Nutrients 13, no. 8: 2816. https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/nu13082816

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