Canadian Community Health Survey, Cycle 2.2, Nutrition Focus - Food and Nutrition Surveillance - Health Canada

Cycle 2.2 of the Canadian Community Health Survey (CCHS) was developed to provide focused information related to the topic of nutrition. It provides the first national nutrition data since the Nutrition Canada survey was conducted nearly 35 years earlier. The data provide reliable information about the food and nutrient intakes of Canadians and the relationship between diet and a wide range of health correlates.

This cross-sectional survey provides information, at the national and provincial levels, on food intake, food groups, nutritional supplements, nutrients, eating patterns, physical activity, Body Mass Index, and household food security.

Specific objectives of the CCHS 2.2 were as follows:

  • Estimate the distribution of usual dietary intakes in terms of foods, food groups, eating patterns, nutrients and dietary supplements among a representative sample of Canadians at national and provincial levels.
  • Obtain measured data on height and weight in order to calculate Body Mass Index (BMI).
  • Estimate the prevalence of household food insecurity among various population groups in Canada .
  • Collect data on selected health conditions and socioeconomic and demographic characteristics of respondents.

The data were collected in 2004. The survey was composed of two parts: a general health questionnaire and a 24-hour dietary recall. The CCHS 2.2 methodology, content description and questionnaire can be found on the Statistics Canada Web site (item 5049).

On this page:


Health Canada, in a joint venture with Statistics Canada has produced 40 summary data tables compiling the usual intakes from food of 30 nutrients and other dietary components obtained by Canadians in 2004. For nutrients that have Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs), the tables also compare usual intakes to the DRIs. Data used for producing the tables were obtained from the CCHS 2.2 Share File. The nutrient intakes represent food consumption; data on nutrient intakes from vitamin and mineral supplements were still being validated at the time these tables were compiled.

Results are presented for 13 geographical areas: the 10 provinces, the Atlantic Region (Prince Edward Island, Nova Scotia, New Brunswick and Newfoundland), the Prairie Region (Alberta, Saskatchewan and Manitoba), and Canada, excluding the territories. Data from the four Atlantic provinces and the three Prairie provinces were combined into the Atlantic Region and the Prairie Region, respectively, given the small sample sizes in these provinces.

The 3 volumes consist primarily of data tables and do not provide any interpretation or draw conclusions. To optimize the usage of these reports, they should be read in concert with the report, Canadian Community Health Survey, Cycle 2.2, Nutrition (2004) - A Guide to Accessing and Interpreting the Data, published by Health Canada in 2006.

In November 2010, the Institute of Medicine (IOM) released new Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs) for Calcium and Vitamin D. Instead of an Adequate Intake (AI), both nutrients now have an Estimated Average Requirement (EAR) for life stage groups 1-3 years and older. In addition, some of the Tolerable Upper Intake Levels (ULs) have changed. The summary tables for these two nutrients have been updated accordingly and are available upon request at

A series of three Articles on Canadians' Nutrient Intakes from Food have been created to provide an interpretation of the data tables included on this disc. The three articles provide an assessment of the energy and nutrient intakes of Canadian children, adolescents, and adults. These articles are not included on the disk.

The Nutrient Intakes from Food Provincial, Regional and National Summary Data Tables, Volume 1, 2 and 3 are available in electronic form as a zip file that can be requested by email at (see an example of a data table.

What's included in the file?

  • Canadian Community Health Survey, Cycle 2.2, Nutrition (2004)-Nutrient Intakes from Food: Provincial, Regional and National Summary Data Tables, Volume 1,2 and 3
    • 40 sets of data tables, comparing usual intakes to the DRI's where possible, organized by nutrient for 13 geographical regions (see an example of a data table).
    • The same data tables organized by geographical region
    • List of the Nutrients included in the Three-Volume Set:
      • Volume 1: Total Energy, Percentage of total energy intake from: fats, protein, carbohydrates, saturated fats, monounsaturated fats, polyunsaturated fats, Total dietary fibre, Cholesterol, Vitamin A, Vitamin C, Calcium and Sodium.
      • Volume 2: Folate (DFE), Iron, Linoleic fatty acid (g, % energy), Magnesium, Niacin, Phosphorus, Potassium, Riboflavin, Thiamin, Vitamin B6 , Vitamin B12 , Vitamin C by smoking status, Vitamin D and Zinc.
      • Volume 3: Folacin, Linolenic fatty acid (g, % energy), Moisture Naturally occurring folate, Protein, Total carbohydrates,Total fats, Total monounsaturated fats, Total polyunsaturated fats, Total saturated fats and Total sugars.
    • The documents consist primarily of data tables and do not provide any interpretation or draw conclusions.
  • Canadian Community Health Survey, Cycle 2.2, Nutrition (2004) - A Guide to Accessing and Interpreting the Data published by Health Canada in 2006.
    • This Guide is needed to optimize the usage of the data tables
    • This Guide includes an overview of the CCHS 2.2, including a description of the survey sample, how the survey was conducted, survey components, and an explanation of the DRIs using concrete examples that are important for interpreting the tables.

Who is it intended for?

This publication is a reference for those who will use the CCHS Cycle 2.2 data and its findings to guide nutrition-related program and policy decisions. It will be of particular benefit to provincial ministries of health, researchers and graduate students, policy makers and analysts, public health professionals, epidemiologists, dietitians and the food industry.

How to order the file?

The zip file can be requested by email at

Canadian Community Health Survey, Cycle 2.2, Nutrition (2004) - Income-Related Household Food Security in Canada provides national and provincial estimates of household, adult and child food security and insecurity based on a multiple-indicator survey tool, highlighting population sub-groups for whom food insecurity is more prevalent. This report focusses on one specific aspect of food security: whether households have the financial resources they need to consistently access adequate food in sufficient quantities for all household members.

The report includes:

  • a description of an innovative approach to interpret and describe the food security situation of Canadian households, adults and children
  • estimates of household, adult and child food security and insecurity in the general Canadian population and in the off-reserve Aboriginal population according to different socio-demographic variables
  • information on comparing the results from the CCHS 2.2 with those from other surveys.

Canadian Community Health Survey, Cycle 2.2, Nutrition (2004) - Income-Related Households Food Security in Canada: Supplementary Data Tables is a complement to the full report. These supplementary data tables provide detailed information on the income-related food security status of households in each of the 10 Canadian provinces as well as the Atlantic and Prairie regions in 2004.

Canadian Community Health Survey, Cycle 2.2, Nutrition (2004) - A Guide to Accessing and Interpreting the Data, is a concise reference for those wanting to use the CCHS 2.2 data. Its purpose is to increase understanding of the nature of the data and the considerations relevant to their analysis and interpretation. It is anticipated that the guide will promote the appropriate use and interpretation of the data, and consistent reporting of the survey findings.

The guide describes:

  • an overview of the CCHS and Cycle 2.2;
  • how the Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs) can be used in interpreting the dietary intake data;
  • data tables that will be available from the CCHS 2.2 and how to access them; and
  • how to compare the results with those of other surveys or data sources.

This guide is designed to support users of the CCHS 2.2 data. It is the first in a series of reports Health Canada will release relating to the CCHS 2.2.

Data Releases

The CCHS 2.2 data were released in 3 waves.

Wave 1 - The wave 1 release occurred on July 6, 2005 , and included the following data related to the general health questionnaire:

  • Physical Activity (respondents aged 12 years or older)
  • Sedentary Activity (respondents aged 12 to 17 years)
  • Children's Physical Activity (respondents aged 6 to 11 years)
  • Self-Reported Height and Weight (10% of respondents aged 18 years or older)
  • Measured Height and Weight (respondents aged 2 years or older)
  • Fruit and Vegetable Consumption (respondents aged 6 months or older)
  • Food Security
  • Chronic Conditions (includes osteoporosis for respondents aged 50 years or older)
  • Women's Health
  • Smoking
  • Alcohol
  • General Health
  • Socio-Demographics
  • Labour Force
  • Income
  • Household Demographics

Two feature reports related to this wave of data have been produced by Statistics Canada:

Data tables on sedentary activity (12 to 17 years), children's physical activity (6 to 11 years), BMI (2 to 17 years, 18 years or older) and level of household food insecurity is available on the Statistics Canada Web site.

Wave 2 - The wave 2 release occurred on July 6, 2006 , and contained data on:

  • Food and Nutrient Intakes
    These data were gathered using a one-day 24-hour dietary recall and adjusted using a second 24-hour dietary recall with a sub-sample.
  • Vitamin and Mineral Supplements
    Note: At the time the wave 2 data were released, the information collected in the module on Vitamin and Mineral Supplement Details was still being validated. The wave 2 release of data only contained information on whether vitamin and mineral supplements were consumed.

A feature report related to this wave of data has been produced by Statistics Canada:

Further CCHS 2.2 data will become available from Health Canada and Statistics Canada in the form of tables and reports. Information on how to access CCHS 2.2 data is available on Statistics Canada Web site.

Wave 3 - The wave 3 release occurred on April 4, 2008. The wave 3 files replace the previous wave 2 data files. Wave 3 includes data on:

  • General Health Component (including vitamin and mineral supplements)
  • 24-Hour Dietary Recall Component share data

This latest release contains three new files for the vitamin and mineral supplement data, as well as corrections to previously released data files.  While many of these Wave 3 files have been previously released, a number of new variables have been added to the files.  In addition, some revisions have been made to variables that were part of the Wave 2 release. 

In brief, changes to the Wave 3 files include:

  • Three new vitamin and mineral supplement files
  • New vitamin and mineral supplement variables on the HS and HS_SIDE files
  • New income derived variables
  • Corrections to two previously released vitamin and mineral supplement variables
  • Corrections/updates to some nutrient values (linolenic acid, Vitamin D, sugar) for specific food codes, which may affect the nutrient profile of some foods and the nutrient roll-ups for some respondents

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