This study documents the dietary patterns and nutrient intake of 652 adult women living in south-east China. Compared with data from previous national surveys and other nutrition studies in China, the results show different dietary patterns. The major differences include a greater consumption of vegetables, fruits and animal foods, but a lower consumption of cereal and tuber foods. The mean daily nutrient intakes of the urban women met the Chinese recommended dietary allowances. However, the situation was different in rural areas, where women had lower mean intakes of vitamins and minerals. There were also significant differences in dietary pattern and food consumption between these two groups of women. Further improvements in dietary intake for those residing in the south-east rural areas of China are needed.