The searching capabilities required to access specific foods in such a large database need to be varied, flexible, and effective. The sheer volume of foods and ingredients in the ESHA database can be overwhelming. Fortunately, there are a lot of methods built into the software that can help simplify and speed up the searches.
This post covers some of the popular and helpful search tips.
Name (or partial-name) and User Code Search
This is the default search for the program. Access it by typing in the search terms and pressing Enter on the keyboard. You can search by the item’s full name (Orange Juice) or use partial words (oran ju) to find the item — search terms are not case-sensitive. Use fewer or more terms to widen or narrow your search.
You can also search by User Code here. For any Recipe or Ingredient (user-created or in the ESHA database), you can enter a unique alpha-numeric User Code. Then, you can search for an item by its code. Enter the entire code and press Enter. The search results will return the one item with that User Code.
Tip: Include USDA or Canada or a specific brand in your search to filter by source. Click on the column headings in the search results list to alphabetize or sort numerically.
F6 – User Code Only Search
Use this option for wildcard searches. On their own, the F6 and Enter searches will only return exact User Code matches. However, if you use an asterisk (*) in the search, you will get all partial matches.
Example: Searching for “ABC*” will retun ABCD, or ABC1 or ABC-00, etc.
Enter the code (or partial code plus asterisk) and press F6 on your keyboard.
Tip: Put your user code in the Recipe or Ingredient name.
Some of our users have found it helpful to put the user code directly in the food item name. Examples: DH15-56 Orange Juice, DH15-57 Apple Juice.
Use the search term DH15 to find all instances of this user code using the Name Search instead of the F6 search.
F11 – Government Code Search
Foods from government-sourced databases (USDA, Health Canada, etc.) are assigned a unique number. To search for these foods, enter the number in the Search box and press F11.
Tip: If you use this search, it’s helpful to keep a list of the codes readily available.
F5 – Nutrient Search
Use the Nutrient Search to find items high or low in a specific nutrient.
- With your recipe open, hit the F5 key to begin your search.
- You can add up to three nutrients and specify higher than, lower than or equal to values.
- To reduce results, you can also enter search terms or choose groups.
Tip: Click here to watch the tutorial.