National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey

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The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) is a survey research program conducted by the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) to assess the health and nutritional status of adults and children in the United States, and to track changes over time.[1] The survey combines interviews, physical examinations and laboratory tests.

The NHANES interview includes demographic, socioeconomic, dietary, and health-related questions. The examination component consists of medical, dental, and physiological measurements, as well as laboratory tests administered by medical personnel.

The very first NHANES was conducted in 1971, and in 1999 the surveys became an annual event; the first report on the topic was published in 2001.[2]

NHANES findings are used to determine the prevalence of major diseases and risk factors for diseases. Information is used to assess nutritional status and its association with health promotion and disease prevention. NHANES findings are also the basis for national standards for such measurements as height, weight, and blood pressure. NHANES data from are used in epidemiological studies and health sciences research, which help develop sound public health policy, direct and design health programs and services, and expand health knowledge.


  1. ^ "About the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey". CDC/National Center for Health Statistics. U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. Retrieved 18 March 2020.
  2. ^ Ozonoff, David (2014). "Biomonitoring". In Rogers, Kara (ed.). Encyclopædia Britannica Online. Encyclopædia Britannica, Inc.

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