Comparing Nutrient Analysis Databases and Programs

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ComparingNutrient Analysis Databases and Programs


Foods, Drinks, Nutrients

USDA Website (Calories, Proteins, Carbs, Fat)

Private Internet Analysis Program

3 scrambled eggs

40, 4, 3, 6

50, 8, 9, 12

4 oz. grilled chicken

65, 8, 9, 6

70, 9, 10, 9

1 cup coffee w/ Tbsp. 2% milk

20, 3, 3, 1

25, 7,7, 6

½ cup steamed spinach w/ salt and pepper

26, 4, 7, 5

34, 8, 9, 8

½ cup brown rice

24, 3, 2, 3

26, 6, 5, 6

4 oz. broiled salmon w/ salt

31, 4, 6, 7

36, 8, 9, 11

1 cup steamed broccoli

15, 4, 2, 1

21, 8, 9, 7

The USDA website yielded more accurate details in comparison to theprivate internet analysis program due to several reasons. Firstly,the USDA website had a larger database comprising of over 180,000foods (United States Department of Agriculture, 2013). On the otherhand, the private internet analysis program had less than 100,000foods. Secondly, the figures contained in the USDA website had beengathered over a longer period in comparison to the private internetanalysis program. The foods and nutrients in the former database hadbeen analyzed severally in comparison to the latter program. The USDAprogram was established using substantial financial resources sinceit was a government-owned database. However, the private analysisprogram relied on the resources of a particular organization. TheUSDA program underwent numerous reviews due to constant use by largesections of the population. The private internet analysis program wasknown and used by a comparatively fewer number of people. In thisregard, it would be reasonable to expect that the USDA website wouldprovide more accurate details in comparison to the private internetanalysis program.

Admittedly, both the USDA and private internet analysis websites arehindered by generic flaws. For example, the USDA website is hinderedby its focus on American food items. Hence, people from differentregions would find it quite hard to benefit from the database. Somefoods are not common to people in remote areas. Besides, differentnames are used to refer to the same foods depending on the country oforigin. The USDA website should enhance its parameters to create auniversal rendition of diets. People from different areas should makebeneficial use of the USDA website. On the other hand, the privateinternet analysis program can be improved by increasing the number ofverified foods. The addition of more foods and nutrients can make thedatabase more effective for analyzing content. Furthermore, theprivate internet analysis program can be improved by adding drop-downmenus.

The USDA website is more user-friendly since it has keyword listingsand drop-down menus. In this regard, the user can select variousnutrients and foods before analyzing the food content. The keywordlistings on the USDA website contain nutrients and the ground beefcalculator. Users have an opportunity to contact the websitedevelopers and offer suggestions or lodge complaints. However, theprivate internet analysis program contains fewer items with no dropdown menus. Users must scroll down the menus before selectingspecific foods and drinks.

I prefer to use the USDA website for my private nutrition consultingbusiness due to several reasons. The website has more than 180,000foods, drinks, and nutrients. The database provides an extensivechoice for consumers. The USDA website is also user-friendly andrequires no subscriptions.


United States Department of Agriculture. (2013, March 12). USDAFood Composition Databases Retrieved from