Our Nutrition and Physical Activity Research


Poor diet, physical inactivity and obesity are leading causes of mortality and morbidity worldwide. The Nutrition and Physical Activity Research Programme targets important determinants of these conditions, and focuses on policy and practice-relevant interventions to inform national and international efforts to improve eating habits, increase physical activity, and prevent obesity.

DIET is a 5-year programme of research that will evaluate the impact of a number of promising nutrition interventions on population food purchases and diets, and estimate the effects of such interventions on long-term health and inequalities.

A randomised controlled trial to examine the effect of a home and community-based exercise intervention on increasing smoking cessation rates when added to usual care (smoking cessation support delivered by Quitline + nicotine replacement therapy; NRT).

Efficacy of a mobile (phone and internet) -health exercise-based cardiac rehabilitation programme.

The Horizon study aims to develop and pre-test a mobile health (mobile phone and internet-delivered-mHealth) weight management programme

Identifying opportunities for healthier reformulation of processed foods to reduce nutrition-related disease in New Zealand

The PANAMA project focuses on exploiting new technologies to measure diet and physical activity, and quantifying the impact of changes to nutrition and exercise levels on population health.

Feasibility and validity of SenseCam-assisted dietary assessment to reduce under-reporting of energy intake<--break- />

Determining the effect of the SaltSwitch smartphone application on the salt content of food purchases made by households where at least one member has diagnosed cardiovascular disease.

Estimating effects of targeted food taxes and subsidies on population diet, health, and burden of disease

A randomised controlled trial to determine the effect of an intervention to reduce screen-based sedentary behaviour on body composition, sedentary behaviour, physical activity and nutrition in New Zealand children.

The New Zealand virtual supermarket offers a three-dimensional web-based supermarket in the image of a real supermarket to undertake experiments on the effects of interventions such as food labelling and changes in food pricing on consumer food purchases.

Position Statements

Nutrition and Physical Activity already completed by NIHI

A stepped wedge cluster randomised trial providing a free school breakfast

Feasibility study of a novel weight control intervention for New Zealand

Clinical Guidelines for Weight Management in New Zealand Adults, Children and Young People provide updated evidence-based guidance for health care workers in primary care and the community to help with weight loss.

A randomised, placebo-controlled trial evaluating the effect of the dietary supplement, Chitosan, on body weight

Active Video Games to Improve Body Composition and Physical Activity in Children

A pilot study to test the feasibility of a large randomised controlled trial to assess the effectiveness of active video games to increase physical activity and decrease body mass in children

Multi-method research to identify and prioritise key environmental factors that influence food security and physical activity amongst Maori, Pacific, and low-income families in New Zealand.

This review will update and combine two background papers to produce the draft Food and Nutrition Guidelines for Healthy Children and Young People: A background paper