Nutrition (50+ years)

The Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Healthy Older People recommend that along with three other food groups*, older people should eat at least three servings of vegetables and at least two servings of fruit per day (Ministry of Health 2010a). Having consistent access to affordable foods of high nutritional value is a key determinant for whether such foods will be consumed (an indication of food security).

Although the proportions of older Māori consuming adequate vegetables and fruit are an improvement on those recorded for the whole population (see Ministry of Health 2010d), there was still a substantial proportion of this older population who did not meet the minimum recommended vegetable and fruit intake.

Disparities between Māori and non-Māori in both the 50–64 years and 65+ years age groups were consistently observed among females, where Māori were significantly less likely than non-Māori to have had three or more servings of vegetables and/or two or more servings of fruit per day.

There were no significant differences in vegetable and fruit intake between older Māori males and older non-Māori males.

View the Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Healthy Older People.

How to interpret results – tables

Table 10: Nutrition indicators, Māori and non-Māori, by gender, 2006/07
  Males Females
  50–64 years 65+ years 50–64 years 65+ years
Indicator Māori non-Maori Māori non-Māori Māori non-Māori Māori non-Māori
3 or more servings of vegetables per day (self-reported), 2006/07, percent 60.1
(49.6–70.6)
64.2
(60.0–68.5)
65.0
(53.8–76.2)
69.9
(66.4–73.4)
65.2
(58.1–72.3)
78.0
(74.9–81.1)
68.0
(59.0–77.0)
76.7
(74.0–79.5)
2 or more servings of fruit per day (self-reported), 2006/07, percent 44.1
(34.8–53.4)
55.0
(51.6–58.4)
51.9
(39.6–64.3)
57.4
(53.5–61.3)
65.5
(58.5–72.6)
74.3
(71.5–77.2)
63.7
(55.1–72.2)
75.6
(72.7–78.5)
3 or more servings of vegetables and 2 or more of fruit per day (self-reported), 2006/07, percent 30.9
(21.3–40.6)
38.8
(35.1–42.5)
36.8
(25.8–47.7)
44.2
(40.3–48.2)
49.5
(41.7–57.2)
61.1
(57.8–64.4)
45.0
(36.4–53.7)
61.4
(58.4–64.5)

Source: 2006/07 New Zealand Health Survey, Ministry of Health

Notes:
Age standardised to the 2001 Census total Māori population.
Prioritised ethnicity has been used – see Ngā Tapuae me ngā Raraunga: Methods and data sources for further information.

*The three other recommended food groups for healthy older people are: breads and cereals, milk and milk products; lean meat, poultry, seafood, eggs, nuts and seeds, and legumes.

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