Services for food education and research on food consumption.
Research methods in food consumption
Frequency survey on food consumption

In the DAGIS study, a food frequency questionnaire (FFQ) has been drawn up for preschool children, and its validity has been assessed. For all openly available DAGIS forms, visit the project website. The questionnaire can be used as such, but we ask you to notify us of any use. If you are interested in further developing the form, we are happy to discuss cooperation. In addition, other FFQ forms have been drawn up in the DAGIS study. For further information on them, please reach out to the researchers.

Food diary

A food diary developed in the DAGIS project can be used as such or in edited form. For all openly available DAGIS forms, visit the project website.

Photographic food atlases

The ability to assess portion sizes is important in assessing food consumption. In this, a photographic food atlas can be helpful.

Children’s photographic food atlas

A photographic food atlas has been designed to help assess children’s food intake. It is suitable for nutritional guidance and for use in research. The food atlas includes food and beverages typically consumed by children. The content was chosen with the help of children’s food diaries. Colour coding on the edge of the pages makes it easier to find different product groups. The food atlas was created as part of DAGIS, a collaborative research project carried out by the Folkhälsan Research Center, the University of Helsinki, the University of Eastern Finland and the Seinäjoki University of Applied Sciences. The food atlas is available online. A printed version is available on order.

Photographic food atlas of Kenyan dishes

photographic food atlas of Kenyan dishes was developed in the KENFIN EDURA project. The food atlas was developed as an aid for evaluating the size of Kenyan adolescents’ portions in an urban setting. It can be used as a tool in both research and dietary advice.

Food security

The Household Food Insecurity Access Scale (HFIAS), translated into Finnish and edited to the individual level, has been utilised in the PAMEL and ROSA studies. A publication has been released on the validation of the Finnish-language version of the scale. 

Research resources
Open research datasets

The Global Dietary Database offers a food diary dataset of Finnish kindergarten-age children from the DAGIS survey in the period 2015–2016 and a 24-hour food consumption interview dataset of Mozambican adolescent girls from the ZANE study from 2010. The datasets are freely available, provided that users cite them in accordance with the guidelines of the Global Dietary Database. We are also happy to conduct collaboration related to these datasets. 

Materials for research collaboration

Grocery shop purchase data (LoCard)

The kind of food Finns eat has a range of effects on health, wellbeing, the environment and society. Loyalty card data from grocery shops provide a unique tool for investigating and understanding phenomena associated with these themes. The cross-disciplinary projects of the LoCard research group utilise such data, particularly in research in the field of health and social sciences. As the basis for analyses, we have drawn up a new classification for the loyalty card data, which offers opportunities to examine the healthiness and environmental effects of food purchases. A research publication on the classification is also available.

The LoCard dataset offers many opportunities for setting and solving a range of multidisciplinary research questions. The data can be used for joint projects within the limits of agreements pertaining to their use.


DAGIS project data


DAGIS is a long-term research project investigating children’s lifestyles, wellbeing and stress regulation. The goal is to reduce children’s socioeconomic health inequalities and create a health-promoting environment for children and adults. DAGIS is a collaborative research project carried out by the Folkhälsan Research Center, the University of Helsinki, the University of Eastern Finland and the Seinäjoki University of Applied Sciences. In accordance with the principle of open science, the methods and forms developed in the project are available on the project website. The website also includes a number of research results, including a Finnish-language report on children’s food consumption and nutrient intake. The DAGIS project offers a diverse range of datasets for research collaboration.

DAGIS survey: An extensive cross-sectional study in the survey phase was carried out in eight municipalities in 2015 and 2016, with more than 800 children and parents as well as 66 daycare centres as participants.

DAGIS intervention: An extensive intervention study carried out under the randomised controlled trial (RCT) design aimed at promoting healthy lifestyles among children and boosting their self-regulation skills. The project was carried out in two municipalities, with approximately 800 children and parents as well as 32 daycare centres participating. In addition, a separate repeatability study was carried out in which the repeatability of the study forms was tested.

DAGIS Next: Children who participated in the DAGIS survey in 2015–2016 will be investigated in 2023 when they are 11 to 14 years of age. The DAGIS Next study looks into the connections between circadian rhythm, eating, sleep and weight. In addition, the links between diet in early childhood, allergies and asthma will be examined.

DAGIS Salo: The DAGIS Salo follow-up study will begin in autumn 2023, with pupils from the third to sixth grades in schools located in the municipality of Salo to be invited to participate. The study investigates factors associated with the home, daycare and school environments that have a link to, among other things, lifestyles, weight, stress recovery and learning.


Food education materials

You can familiarise yourself with the food education materials produced at the Department of Food and Nutrition, University of Helsinki. The materials have been produced in research projects focused on children’s food consumption and nutrition.

The FoodStep project is a research consortium funded by the Research Council of Finland, which includes the Finnish Institute for Health and Welfare, the University of Helsinki, Natural Resources Institute Finland and the Laurea University of Applied Sciences. The project is aimed at developing a sustainable model that supports children’s healthy diets and reduces the climate effects of the food system in early childhood education.

The project’s material bank contains a wide range of food education material for free use: ideas and tips for joint activities with children, information and tips for early childhood education as well as recipes and ideas for cooking and reducing waste.