This report overviews the 2002 National Children’s Nutrition Survey (CNS02).
It describes the methodologies and the data on nutrient intakes and their sources; food security; eating patterns; frequently eaten foods; physical activity patterns; dental health; anthropometric measures and selected nutrition-related clinical measures of New Zealand schoolchildren 5–14 years of age.
A nationally representative sample of children was recruited by first selecting a random sample of schools, and then randomly selecting children for participation within these schools. Sufficient Maori and Pacific children were included so that ethnic-specific analyses could be undertaken.
Three thousand two hundred and seventy-five children participated with parental and personal consent. Anthropometric measurements and collection of blood and urine samples occurred at school, while the main interview was normally carried out in the child’s home in the presence of a parent/caregiver to optimise the collection of the dietary data and ensure quality responses to all interview questions.
The dietary data are unique among national surveys of children in that the 24-hour diet recall included dietary supplements as well as foods and beverages. The collection of a repeat 24-hour diet recall on a subsample enabled the statistical adjustment of the data to present the ‘usual’ intake distribution for nutrients by subgroup. The usual frequency of intake of commonly eaten foods was assessed by a qualitative food frequency questionnaire.
This important study provides the first opportunity to examine all aspects of the nutritional status of New Zealand children.