• Dietary reference values (DRVs) are used
to give an indication of the amount of a
particular nutrient that is required in a
• No one individual value is given for any
nutrient and the values are meant to be
taken as guidelines rather than
• Where possible DRVs have been
calculated from a normal distribution curve
showing the daily requirement for energy
or a dietary nutrient against the number of
people in a particular group with that
ESTIMATED AVERAGE REQUIREMENT
The estimate of an average requirement of a
population i.e. 50% of the population will
need more, 50% will need less.
This value is given for energy as well as for
macro- and micronutrients.
REFERENCE NUTRIENT INTAKE (RNI)
Represents enough or more than enough to
meet the needs of almost all (about 98%)
of the population (even those with high
needs). Habitual intakes above RNI are
almost certainly adequate.
LOWER REFERENCE NUTRIENT INTAKE
Amount that is sufficient for people with low
needs. Most people (98%) need more than
this. Habitual intakes below the LRNI by
an individual will almost certainly be
RNI and LRNI values are only given for
nutrients not energy.
Why do you think this is?
• For micronutrients for which there was
insufficient data to generate normal
distribution curves a group of DRVs called
SAFE INTAKES are used.
• Safe intake values represent enough to
prevent deficiency but are well below the
level at which the micronutrient would be