No national data on dietary intake of adults is currently available (Mchiza et al. 2015) and the National Food Consumption Survey which documented dietary intake of children 1-9 years, is more than 20 years old. The 3rd National Risk survey (Reddy, 2013) recorded information on adolescent risk behaviour including food consumption, but this did not include adequacy of nutrient intake.
The online calculator of Worldometer https://www.worldometers.info/world-population/south-africa-population/ suggests that the South African population reached 60 million on Sunday 16 January 2022. The country is regarded as nationally food secure but the divide in access to resources and high unemployment continues to render a significant proportion of citizens’ food insecure (Misselhorn & Hendriks 2017) and at nutritional risk. In addition, urbanisation is contributing to changed livelihoods and diets in both rural and urban areas. Food acquisition is primarily dependent on cash in food systems that are being transformed through the penetration of formal retail, international trade and globalization (Battersby et al. 2016; Crush et al. 2012; Reardon et al. 2015).
The aim of the study is to better understand the foods and drinks consumed by various income categories, age and gender groups in South Africa and to understand factors influencing their intake.
The objectives of the nationally representative survey are to:
- Visit households to
o determine the feeding practices of children aged 0-23 months
o determine the most commonly consumed foods and drinks, nutrient intake, and dietary diversityof children <5 years
o assess nutritional knowledge, practices and attitudes of caregivers of young children
o determine the most commonly consumed foods and drinks, the nutrient intake and dietary diversity of adults (aged 20-59 years)
o assess nutritional knowledge, practices and attitudes of adults (aged 20-59years)
o determine the most commonly consumed foods and drinks, nutrient intake and dietary diversity by elderly (aged 60-75 years)
- Visit early child development (ECD) centres (registered and unregistered) to
o determine feeding practices in ECDs
o assess the growth (height-for-age) and weight status (weight-for-age) of children in ECDs
o assess nutritional knowledge, practices and attitudes of care givers of young children
- Visit schools (primary and secondary schools) to
o assess the nutritional value of foods consumed (energy, macro- and micronutrient intake) by adolescents (aged 14-18 years)
o determine the dietary diversity of adolescents (aged 14-18 years)
o assess nutritional knowledge, practices and attitudes of adolescents
o determine foods sold in school tuck shops and by school vendors
- assess factors influencing food choices and purchasing
- assess oral health of all age brackets
- investigate the associations between dietary intake, food security, socio-demographic profile, anthropometric status as well as selected environmental factors including oral health and mental health.
The study will be conducted in 446 enumeration areas (EAs) distributed among all of the provinces according to specific stratification criteria including geographic area (proportionate distribution of metro, non-metro urban and non-metro rural areas), provincial population (0.5 power), population group and wealth (combined 05/0.6 power and 0.7 power respectively).