Background: The aim of the Hellenic National Nutrition and Health Survey was to assess nutritional intake, health status and various behaviors in a representative sample of the Greek population.
Methods: Data collection took place from 01.09.2013 to 31.05.2015. Random stratified sampling was performed by (a) geographical density criteria of Greece (7 regions), (b) age group of the reference population (< 19, 20-64 and > 65 years) and (c) gender distribution. The final population enrolled included (throughout Greece), 4574 individuals (42.5% men; 57.5% women of who 47.2% were from Athens metropolitan area, 18.5% from Central Macedonia, and the remaining 34% almost equally scattered throughout the country (p for the comparisons with official statistics by region, age group and sex > 0.7). Questionnaires developed were based on extensive review of the literature, following a validation procedure when necessary.
Results: Preliminary analyses revealed that 32% of the adult population were overweight and 15.5% were obese, with significant gender differences in total and per age group (p < 0.001, for all). The majority of the adult population reported being active smokers (50.4%) or regular alcohol consumers (72.4%); with significant gender differences (p < 0.001, for all). Prevalence of hyperlipidemia was 16.7%, cardiovascular disease 13.9%, hypertension 13.3%, thyroid disease 13.8%, and Diabetes Mellitus 3.6%. Significant gender and age group differences were found in various diseases.
Conclusions: Study's preliminary results provide valuable information about the Hellenic population's health. Findings from this survey could be used to detect disease risk factors for public health prevention policies and programs.
Keywords: Cross-sectional study; Diet; Greece; Nutrition survey/ methods; Public health.