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Nutrition and Dietary Behaviour

Food provides us with energy and vital nutrients. Both deficits and surpluses in dietary components affect the emergence and the progression of many diseases. The quality of our diets also has an effect on our wellbeing.

Data from the Health Monitoring Programme on Dietary Behaviour

In the framework of the health monitoring programme, the Robert Koch Institute regularly collects data on different aspects of dietary behaviour. Dietary behaviour is covered in detail in the nutrition module of the German National Health Interview and Examination Survey 1998 and in the nutrition study as KiGGS module (EsKiMo).

Research Projects and Cooperation

In combination with other survey data, the nutrition data makes it possible to address a number of questions. Long-term cooperation agreements are in place for these analyses and for the further development of tools to collect data on dietary behaviour and create corresponding databases (for example, nutrient databases).

For example, the RKI cooperates with the Max Rubner Institute, the Federal Institute for Risk Assessment, the German Institute of Human Nutrition, the technical university TU München, the University of Kiel, and the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA) in Parma, Italy.


Comprehensive assessment of food and nutrient intake of children and adolescents in Germany: EsKiMo II – the eating study as a KiGGS module

Lage-Barbosa C, Brettschneider AK, Haftenberger M, Lehmann F, Frank M, Heide K, Patelakis E, Perlitz H, Krause L, Houben R, Burschalowsky HG, Richter A, Kamtsiuris P, Mensink GBM (2017) BMC Nutrition 3:75 DOI: 10.1186/s40795-017-0196-5

Examination of iodine status in the German population: an example for methodological pitfalls of the current approach of iodine status assessment (Abstract)

Johner SA, Thamm M, Schmitz R, Remer T (2016) Eur J Nutr 55(3): 1275-1282 DOI: 10.1007/s00394-015-0941-y

Current daily salt intake in Germany: biomarker-based analysis of the representative DEGS study

Johner SA, Thamm M, Schmitz R, Remer T (2015) Eur J Nutr (2015) 54: 1109. doi: 10.1007/s00394-014-0787-8

Dietary behaviour and parental socioeconomic position among adolescents: the German Health Interview and Examination Survey for Children and Adolescents 2003-2006 (KiGGS)

Finger JD, Varnaccia G, Tylleskär T, Lampert T, Mensink GB (2015) BMC Public Health 15(1): 498 · DOI: 10.1186/s12889-015-1830-2

Breast-feeding and maternal risk of type 2 diabetes: a prospective study and meta-analysis

Jäger S, Jacobs S, Kröger J, Fritsche A, Schienkiewitz A, Rubin D, Boeing H, Schulze MB (2014) Diabetologia 57:1355–1365 doi: 10.1007/s00125-014-3247-3

Mapping low intake of micronutrients across Europe

Mensink GBM, Fletcher R, Gurinovic M, Huybrechts I, Lafay L, Serra-Majem L, Szponar L, Tetens I, Verkaik-Kloosterman J, Baka A and Stephen AM (2013) Br. J. Nutr. 110(04): 755-773. DOI:

Dietary behaviour and socioeconomic position: the role of physical activity patterns

Finger JD, Tylleskär T, Lampert T, Mensink GBM (2013) PLoSONE 8(11): e78390. doi:10.1371/journal.pone.0078390

Dietary patterns of adolescents in Germany - Associations with nutrient intake and other health related lifestyle characteristics.

Richter A, Heidemann C, Schulze MB, Roosen J, Thiele S., Mensink, GBM (2012) BMC Pediatrics 2012, 12:35, doi:10.1186/1471-2431-12-35

Relative validation of the KiGGS Food Frequency Questionnaire among adolescents in Germany

Julia Truthmann, Gert BM Mensink, Almut Richter (2011) Nutrition Journal, 10:133

Dietary patterns are associated with cardiometabolic risk factors in a representative study population of German adults

Heidemann C, Scheidt-Nave C, Richter A, Mensink GBM (2011) British Journal of Nutrition 106(8): 1253–1262 doi:10.1017/S0007114511001504

Food intake of young people with a migration background living in Germany

Kleiser C, Mensink G, Neuhauser H, Schenk L, Kurth B (2010) Public Health Nutrition. 13(3):324-330 doi:10.1017/S1368980009991030

Relative validation of a food frequency questionnaire for national health and nutrition monitoring

Marjolein Haftenberger, Thorsten Heuer, Christin Heidemann, Friederike Kube1, Carolin Krems and Gert BM Mensink (2010) Nutrition Journal, 9:36

HuSKY: a healthy nutrition score based on food intake of children and adolescents in Germany

Kleiser C, Mensink G, Scheidt-Nave C, Kurth B. (2009) British Journal of Nutrition. vol. 102, issue 04, 610–618

Potential determinants of obesity among children and adolescents in Germany

Kleiser C, Schaffrath Rosario A, Mensink GBM et al. (2009) BMC Public Health 9:46 DOI:10.1186/1471-2458-9-46

Vitamin D status and health correlates among German adults

Hintzpeter B, Mensink GBM, Thierfelder W, Müller MJ, Scheidt-Nave C (2008): European Journal of Clinical Nutrition 62, 1079–1089

Higher Prevalence of Vitamin D Deficiency Is Associated with Immigrant Background among Children and Adolescents in Germany

Hintzpeter B, Scheidt-Nave C, Müller MJ, Schenk L, Mensink GBM (2008) J. Nutr. vol. 138 no. 8 1482-1490