For the last 10 years, EFSA has been evaluating/updating the values for macronutrients such as proteins and carbohydrates, as well as 14 vitamins and 13 minerals. EFSA’s latest scientific opinion about dietary reference values (DRVs) was published this month, setting the DRVs for sodium and chloride. DRVs is an umbrella term for science-based nutrient reference values for the daily intake of healthy populations which include population reference intakes (PRIs), the average requirements (ARs), adequate intakes (AIs), and reference intake (RIs) ranges for macronutrients. These values indicate the amount of a nutrient which must be consumed on a regular basis to maintain health in an otherwise healthy individual (or population).

Based on this scientific opinion, EFSA experts concluded that 2.0 g of sodium per day is both safe and adequate for the adult population. The same value applies to pregnant and lactating women. When it comes to children, the safe sodium intake was adjusted for their respective energy requirements and growth factors. To read more about the dietary reference values for sodium, please click here.

Meanwhile, the dietary reference value for chloride for adults (as well as for children from 11 years of age) was set to be 3.1 g per day. This value is also safe for pregnant and lactating women. The EFSA panel considered that sodium chloride is the main source of chloride in European diets. For the full overview of the EFSA opinion on chloride, please click here.

Apart from EFSA’s DRV opinions published in the EFSA Journal, EFSA has also launched an easy tool – the DRV Finder – last year. The DRV Finder is an interactive tool that provides a quick and easy search of EFSA’s DRVs by population group or nutrient. It contains DRVs for water, fats, carbohydrates, dietary fiber, protein, and energy, as well as for vitamins and minerals. This tool allows nutritionists and other health professionals to make quick and easy calculations using EFSA’s dietary reference values. To have access to DRV Finder, click here.