Objective: To describe the status of nutrition and health related indices in the Chinese population.
Methods: A stratified multi-stage cluster sampling was used from 31 provinces, autonomous regions, and municipalities. The survey was done in 2002, including data gathered from questionnaires, interviews, physical examinations, measurement of biochemical indices, and dietary investigation.
Results: Cereals accounted for 48.5% of all the sources of energy in urban and 61.4% in rural populations. Daily mean percentages of calories for total fat were 35.0% in urban and 27.5% in rural areas. The prevalence rates of stunting and underweight were 14.3% and 7.8% respectively in young children under 5-year-old. The prevalence of vitamin A deficiency was 9.3% in Chinese children aged 3-12 years old. The total prevalence of anemia was 15.2% in general population of all ages. The prevalence of anemia in young adults was significantly higher in women than in men. The total prevalence rates of overweight and obesity were 17.6% and 5.6%, respectively. The prevalence rates of hypertension, diabetes, hypercholesteremia, hypertriglyceridemia, or low serum high density lipoprotein cholesterol were 18.8%, 2.6%, 2.9%, 11.9%, 7.4% respectively in Chinese adults aged 18 and over. The rates of awareness, treatment, and under control among hypertensives were 30.2%, 24.7%, and 25.0%, respectively. Significant regional and age differences were revealed in the dietary habit and the prevalence of various diseases. The prevalence of diseases associated with malnutrition were higher in rural than in urban areas. In contrast, the prevalence of conditions associated with overconsumption and inappropriate dietary patterns were higher in urban than in rural populations.
Conclusion: Chinese people were currently suffering from both problems on nutrition related issues and burdens of diseases which were characterized in nutrient deficiencies and overconsumption, malnutrition and noncommunicable conditions associated with overconsumption and inappropriate diet. The difference of nutrition and health status between rural and urban people was also seen.