What we need is a nutrient analysis program. Although there are a few available, we need one specific to our needs here in Guatemala. We collect dietary data from Guatemalan study participants using 24-hr recalls. What this means is that we ask them everything they consumed the previous day using foods, recipes and household measurements. What we need to do is link each ingredient to a USDA food code (available online and with related nutrient values). Furthermore we need to calculate the exact amount of each ingredient consumed. So if a recipe is reported using measures such as 1 liter of milk, 5 eggs, etc and the person reported eating one slice, then we need the actual amount of milk and eggs in that portion (such as 334 g or milk and 67 g of eggs). This requires data on sizes of household measures, such as how many grams in a cup of milk or a slice of pie. This info we have available and have been building on for years. Its really about ratios, what proportion of the total recipe is consumed.
In the past, I have done this analysis using Excel and SPSS, but that is too labor intensive!
We need several outputs, The main output has 3 columns per ingredient. Ingredient name, weight consumed in grams and USDA code. This I usually link to the USDA table using SPSS. Further outputs in the future include variety and diversity scores and total amounts of certain foods consumed. Main sources of nutrients, etc.
We need this to work using something that I could learn to manage and adapt. Such as ACCESS of Epi-info (suggestions are more than wellcome). I am more than happy to have long discussions on skype (mari999).
Thank you so much for considering this job!