Knowledge for better food systems

Understanding the Transition in Diet, Activity, Body Composition and Nutrition-related Non-communicable Diseases in China

This set of papers reports on findings from the most recent undertaking of the China Health and Nutrition Survey (CHNS). The CHNS is a long-term ongoing longitudinal cohort with in-depth community data and household socio-demographic data and very detailed diet, activity, body composition and cardiometabolic measures representative of large populations in China, the largest and one of the most rapidly changing countries in the world.

The findings paint a picture of changes in consumption patterns towards diets higher in animal product, oils/fat and sugar, rising levels of obesity (in rural as well as in urban populations and particularly among children), declining levels of physical activity and increases in non communicable diseases.

The papers are all freely available to download here.

For an overview of dietary transitions and associated issues in China (using date based on the CHNS) take a look at the FCRN’s report on China  entitled Appetite for Change (Chapter 5 focuses on nutrition and health).

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Asia is Earth's largest and most populous continent. It hosts many densely populated and large cities as well as enormous barely populated regions, which all together host over half of the human population. Agriculture as a source of income is of major importance in the region. In most Asian countries, agriculture is the biggest user of water and in some regions can be responsible for to 90% of total water consumption through irrigation.

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