Development of a Brief Questionnaire to Assess Habitual Beverage Intake (BEVQ-15): Sugar-Sweetened Beverages and Total Beverage Energy Intake

Valisa E. Hedrick, Jyoti Savla, Dana L. Comber, Kyle D. Flack, Paul A. Estabrooks, Phyllis A. Nsiah-Kumi, Stacie Ortmeier, Brenda M. Davy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

193 Scopus citations


Introduction: Energy-containing beverages, specifically sugar-sweetened beverages, may contribute to weight gain and obesity development. Yet, no rapid assessment tools are available which quantify habitual beverage intake (grams, energy) in adults. Objective: Determine the factorial validity of a newly developed beverage intake questionnaire (BEVQ) and identify potential to reduce items. Methods: Participants from varying economic and educational backgrounds (n=1,596, age 43±12 years, body mass index [calculated as kg/m2] 31.5±0.2) completed a 19-item BEVQ (BEVQ-19). Beverages that contributed <10% to total beverage, or sugar-sweetened beverages, energy and grams were identified for potential removal. Factor analyses identified beverage categories that could potentially be combined. Regression analyses compared BEVQ-19 outcomes with the reduced version's (BEVQ-15) variables. Inter-item reliability was assessed using Cronbach's α. Following BEVQ-15 development, a subsequent study (n=70, age 37±2 years; body mass index 24.5±0.4) evaluated the relative validity of the BEVQ-15 through comparison of three 24-hour dietary recalls' beverage intake. Results: Three beverage items were identified for elimination (vegetable juice, meal replacement drinks, and mixed alcoholic drinks); beer and light beer were combined into one category. Regression models using BEVQ-15 variables explained 91% to 99% of variance in the four major outcomes of the BEVQ-19 (all P<0.001). Cronbach's α ranged .97 to .99 for all outcomes. In the follow-up study, BEVQ-15 and three 24-hour dietary recalls' variables were significantly correlated with the exception of whole milk; BEVQ-15 sugar-sweetened beverages (R2=0.69), and total beverage energy (R2=0.59) were more highly correlated with three 24-hour dietary recalls' than previously reported for the BEVQ-19. The BEVQ-15 produced a lower readability score of 4.8, which is appropriate for individuals with a fourth-grade education or greater. Conclusions: The BEVQ-19 can be reduced to a 15-item questionnaire. This brief dietary assessment tool will enable researchers and practitioners to rapidly (administration time of ~2 minutes) assess habitual beverage intake, and to determine possible associations of beverage consumption with health-related outcomes, such as weight status.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)840-849
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
Issue number6
StatePublished - Jun 2012

Bibliographical note

Funding Information:
Funding/Support This research was funded by National Institute of Health grant no. K01 DK075424-04 and the Virginia Tech Institute for Critical Technology and Applied Science .


  • Beverage intake
  • Diet assessment
  • Factor analysis
  • Questionnaire
  • Validity

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Food Science
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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