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Recommended Dietary Allowance - RDA

Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA) is the daily dietary intake level of a nutrient that is considered sufficient to meet the requirements of nearly all (97-98%) healthy individuals in each life-stage and gender group. The RDAs are established by the Food and Nutrition Board of the (US) National Academy of Sciences.

They are intended to serve as nutrition guidance to the general public and health professionals. Uses:

* food labels
* composition of diets for schools, prisons, hospitals or nursing homes
* industry developing new food stuffs
* healthcare policy makers and public health officials

In 1997 at the suggestion of the Institute of Medicine of the National Academy RDA became one part of a broader set of dietary guidelines called the Dietary Reference Intake or DRI.

The RDA specifications are not universally accepted.

See also:

USDA RDA chart (PDF file)
Article comparing recommended amounts of vitamins and minerals in different countries from the European Union (PDF file)

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