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Does personalized nutrition advice improve dietary intake in healthy adults? A systematic review of randomized controlled trials

Lookup NU author(s): Professor John Mathers, Dr Katherine Livingstone



This is the authors' accepted manuscript of an article that has been published in its final definitive form by Oxford University Press, 2021.

For re-use rights please refer to the publisher's terms and conditions.


Personalized nutrition (PN) behaviour change interventions are being used increasingly in attempts to improve dietary intake; however the impact of PN advice on improvements in dietary intake has not been reviewed systematically. The aim of this systematic review was to evaluate the effect of PN advice on changes in dietary intake compared with generalised advice in healthy adults. Three databases (EMBASE, PubMed and CINAHL) were searched between 2009 and 2020 for RCTs that tested the effect of PN and tailored advice based on diet, phenotype or genetic information. The Evidence Analysis Library Quality Criteria checklist was used to conduct a risk of bias assessment. Information on intervention design and changes in nutrients, foods and dietary patterns were extracted from the 8 studies meeting the inclusion criteria. Studies were conducted in the United States, Canada or Europe, reported outcomes on 57 to 1488 participants, and varied in follow-up duration from 1 to 12 months. Two studies incorporated behaviour change techniques. The risk of bias for included studies was low. Overall, the available evidence suggests that dietary intake is improved to a greater extent in participants randomised to receive PN advice compared with generalised dietary advice. Additional well-designed PN RCTs are needed that incorporate behaviour change techniques, a broader range of dietary outcomes and comparisons between personalization based on dietary, biological and/or lifestyle information.

Publication metadata

Author(s): Jinnette R, Narita A, Manning B, McNaughton SA, Mathers JC, Livingstone KM

Publication type: Article

Publication status: Published

Journal: Advances in Nutrition

Year: 2021

Volume: 12

Issue: 3

Pages: 657-669

Print publication date: 01/05/2021

Online publication date: 12/12/2020

Acceptance date: 06/10/2020

Date deposited: 14/10/2020

ISSN (print): 2161-8313

ISSN (electronic): 2156-5376

Publisher: Oxford University Press


DOI: 10.1093/advances/nmaa144


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