DIET: Helping to improve nutrition and health in New Zealand
Unhealthy diet is the leading preventable risk for poor health. Dietary risk factors (e.g. high salt intake, raw wholegrain intake and low fruit and vegetable consumption) and obesity rates are higher amongst Māori and Pasifika and key drivers of health inequalities. However, small improvements in diet across the whole population could produce major health gains and cost savings, and reduce inequalities.
The DIET programme will evaluate the effects of four priority action areas to improve diets. The objectives are to:
- Determine the effectiveness and cost effectiveness of a dietary salt reduction intervention in adults with high blood pressure
- Co-design and test commercially sustainable supermarket intervention(s) to promote healthy eating
- Measure the impact of front-of-pack nutrition labels (Health Star Rating- HSR) on population diets
- Assess the effects of a theory-driven campaign to promote improvements to the nutritional composition of processed foods
This new research extends our previous work, with a particular emphasis on practical interventions and translating findings into policy and action. The programme is funded by the Health Research Council of New Zealand.
Congratulations to Professor Boyd Swinburn, DIET Programme Co-Director on his recent prestigious awards including WPT James Award of Public Health Research and International award from the World Obesity Federation.
In addition Professor Swinburn is also the Gluckman Medal Recipient for 2022 from the University of Auckland which recognises his outstanding research contributions.
The Salt content of some pre-packaged sauces in NZ is exceptionally high. Six out of ten sauces sold in NZ don’t meet voluntary salt targets. To read more click here.