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Dietary Reference Intake

Overview

What do the terms RDA, UL, and AI mean?

RDA, UL, and AI are part of a set of nutrient guidelines for healthy people. The guidelines are called the Dietary Reference Intakes.

Recommended Dietary Allowance (RDA).
This is the average daily level that nearly all healthy people should take to meet their nutrient needs.
Tolerable Upper Intake Level (UL).
This is the highest amount of a nutrient a healthy person could take before it could cause a health problem.
Adequate Intake (AI).
This is used only when there isn't enough information about a nutrient to set the RDA. It's the level that experts assume will provide enough of that nutrient.

These guidelines are issued by the Food and Nutrition Board of the National Academy of Sciences. This is an independent nonprofit science group. The guidelines are updated from time to time. Updates are based on the latest data.

What does 'Daily Value' mean on a food label?

Daily Value (DV) is found on the Nutrition Facts label of any packaged food or drink. The DV shows the amount of a nutrient in one serving as a percentage. The % Daily Value is based on 2,000 calories a day. You may need more or less than 2,000 calories a day.

This information does not replace the advice of a doctor. Healthwise, Incorporated, disclaims any warranty or liability for your use of this information. Your use of this information means that you agree to the Terms of Use. Learn how we develop our content.

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