EAL Frequently Asked Questions

Q. What is the Evidence Analysis Library (EAL)?
A. The EAL is a series of systematic reviews and evidence-based nutrition practice guidelines on topics of various disease conditions and other nutrition-related topics. 

Q. What is a systematic review?
A. A systematic review is a high-level process that collects and critically analyzes multiple research studies or papers on a clearly formulated question using explicit methods to identify, select and critically appraise the primary research. Learn more about the EAL’s systematic review process from Policy and Process.
Q: What is the best way to learn about the Evidence Analysis Library (EAL)?
A. New users to the EAL should view the EAL Orientation Tutorials. These are 4 short videos which highlight the features of the EAL – Module 1: provides tips on navigating the site; Module 2: highlights the Academy’s methodology; Module 3 – describes the guideline development process; and Module 4: highlights various resources. Click to access the Tutorial.

Q. Who has oversight over the Academy's Evidence Analysis Library?
A. The Academy Evidence-Based Practice Committee (EBPC), a committee jointly appointed by the House of Delegates (HOD) and Board of Directors (BOD).  Learn more about the EBPC by downloading Evidence Based Practice Committee Structure and Purpose. 

Q. Who does the actual work of completing the evidence analysis?
A. The EAL is developed and created by Academy members for Academy members! Evidence analysts are selected based on their qualifications and experience. The EBPC determines membership of the expert work group (typically 6-8 members) who are recognized as leaders in the particular practice area. The work group for each topic formulates the questions, reviews the evidence summaries, writes the conclusion statements and assigns the grades. Visit Get Involved! for position qualifications and to access the online application.
Q. What does the EAL provide?
A. Each systematic review includes:
  • Research questions organized by Nutrition Care Process category
  • Search Plan & Results
  • List of included articles
  • List of excluded articles with reason for exclusion
  • Evidence summaries and tables
  • For each included article, a worksheet with study risk of bias assessment and quality rating
  • Conclusion statement with grade
    Guidelines include:
  • Guideline Introduction including Scope, Methods, Benefits and Harm
  • Recommendations
  • Recommendation Strength and Narrative
  • Links to the Evidence

Q. How can I learn more about the Academy's Evidence Analysis Process?
A. Click the Policy and Process tab for information on the Academy's meticulous process. Download the Evidence Analysis Manual which thoroughly covers the Academy’s process.

Q. How does the Academy choose topics for the EAL?
A. Projects are identified in a number of ways:
  • Based on Academy research priorities
  • Based on Academy Position Paper topics
  • Based on interest from DPGs and members
  • Based on collaborations with allied organizations and external funders who suggest topics compatible with Academy strategic goals

Q. Why can't I locate the research articles in the EAL?
A. The actual articles are not available on the EAL due to copyright regulations. Academy members can access articles from the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics via www.eatright.org. Users can check with their institution’s library for a subscription; visit the journals website for free access or to purchase a one-time use, or go to PubMed to see if an article is available for free.

Q. What if I have additioal questions?
A. Please email eal@eatright.org or use the Contact Us feature of the EAL.