Are Chatbots Giving Us Good Nutrition Advice?

New research into the consistency and accuracy of the open artificial intelligence (AI) chatbots ChatGPT-3.5 and ChatGPT-4 in providing personalized nutrition information has shown promising results rivaling advice offered by real-life nutritionists. Experts call for nutritionists to educate themselves on AI to facilitate access to nutritional advice while countering misinformation.

“I am a nutritionist, and I only moved into AI around five years ago because I was impressed by the field’s progress and how it can revolutionize the healthcare care system in the future,” Dr. Susan Jung-Su Chang, co-author of the paper and professor at the school of nutrition and health scientists at the Taipei Medical University, Taiwan, tells Nutrition Insight. “With the advancement of AI, it is possible that someday the advice offered by AI will contain more accurate nutritional information than human nutritionists.” 

This current research into the most accessible AI chatbot did not find significant differences between nutritionists’ and AI estimations of energy, carbohydrate and fat contents. However, there was a substantial difference in protein estimation.  “We still don’t fully know the reason for this, but ChatGPT’s accuracy might depend on the different types of foods. At the moment, it seems more likely to overestimate the caloric contents of meals because of its inability to predict protein content accurately,” explains Chang.

Excerpted from Nutrition Insight

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