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close this bookActivity, Energy Expenditure and Energy Requirements of Infants and Children (International Dietary Energy Consultative Group - IDECG, 1989, 412 pages)
close this folderEstimation and validation of energy expenditure obtained by the minute-by-minute measurement of heart-rate
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Open this folder and view contents1. Heart-rate method
Open this folder and view contents2. Validation of heart-rate method
Open this folder and view contents3. Applications of the heart-rate method
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Validation studies have shown that the appropriate use of the minute-by-minute heart-rate method for estimating energy expenditure provides a suitable alternative when high accuracy in individual subjects is not required. It can be used under field conditions and gives excellent measurements of average energy expenditure in small groups of subjects. It is also useful for obtaining the activity pattern of individuals or groups.

Interest in the measurement of energy expenditure (EE) in free-living subjects is evident from the articles presented in this volume. There is widespread attraction to the application of the doubly-labelled water (2H218O) method because of its accuracy in individual subjects (WESTERTERP et al., 1988). However, it has two drawbacks that limit its use in many settings and in some kinds of research project. The expectations that its cost (~300 US$/subject; SCHOELLER, 1988) would be reduced have not been realized. In addition, the highly technical nature of mass-spectrometric analysis requires equipment and training which are formidable. The second drawback is that it gives an average of the energy expenditure over the period of measurement, i.e., it cannot provide the pattern of energy expenditure.

The purpose of this article is to describe an alternative to the 2H218O method which may prove useful in many research situations.