nutrients related to energy metabolism may also decrease. For some nutrients, the DRIs may be the same for the two age groups. However, for other nutrients, especially those related to energy metabolism, AIs or EARs (and RDAs) are likely to differ for these two age groups.

Adulthood and Older Adults: Ages 51 through 70 Years and > 70 Years

The age period of 51 through 70 years spans the active work years for most adults. After age 70, people of the same age increasingly display variability in physiological functioning and physical activity. A comparison of people over age 70 who are the same chronological age may demonstrate as much as a 15- to 20-year, age-related difference in level of reserve capacity and functioning. This is demonstrated by age-related declines in nutrient absorption and renal function. Because of the high variability in functional capacity of older adults, the EARs and AIs for this age group may reflect a greater variability in requirements for the older age categories. This may be most applicable to nutrients for which requirements are related to energy expenditure.

Pregnancy and Lactation

Recommendations for pregnancy and lactation may be subdivided because of the many physiological changes and changes in nutrient needs that occur during these life stages. In setting EARs and AIs for these life stages, however, consideration is given to adaptations to the increased nutrient demand—such as increased absorption and greater conservation of many nutrients. Moreover, there may be net losses of some nutrients that occur physiologically regardless of the nutrient intake. Thus, for some nutrients, there may not be a basis for EAR or AI values that are different during these life stages than they are for other women of comparable age.

Reference Weights and Heights

The reference weights and heights selected for adults and children are shown in Table 1-3. The values are based on anthropometric data collected during 1988 –1994 as part of the Third National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES III) in the United States.

The median heights for children aged 4 through 8, for adoles-

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