This study assessed the affordability of a basic nutritious diet for selected household types relying on income assistance (IA) by comparing potential incomes to the costs of the National Nutritious Food Basket (NNFB) and other essential expenditures in Nova Scotia from 2002 to 2010, and examined the adequacy of IA allowances during this time period.
The cost of the NNFB was surveyed across a random sample of grocery stores in NS during five time periods: 2002, 2004/05, 2007, 2008 and 2010, and was factored into affordability scenarios for three household types relying on IA: a family of four, a lone mother with three children, and a lone male. Essential monthly expenses were deducted from total net income to determine if adequate funds remained for the NNFB.
For each time period examined, the findings demonstrated that all household types faced a significant monthly deficit if they purchased a basic nutritious diet. In each household scenario, the potential monthly deficits increased from 2002 to 2010, ranging from $112 in 2002 for a lone mother with three children to $523 in 2010 for a lone male.
Despite increases in allowances, these findings suggest that the risk of food insecurity has increased for IA-dependent households in NS. To address this public health challenge, public health practitioners must advocate for integrated, progressive and sustainable social welfare policies that ensure that individuals and families relying on IA have adequate income and other supports to meet their basic needs, including access to a healthy diet.
Low-income people are most vulnerable to food insecurity; many turn to community and/or charitable food programs to receive free or low-cost food. This needs assessment aims to collect information on the barriers to accessing food programs, the opportunities for improving food access, the barriers to eating fresh vegetables and fruit, and the opportunities to increasing their consumption among food-insecure people in Cobourg, Ontario.
We interviewed food program clients using structured individual interviews consisting of mostly opened-ended questions.
Food program clients identified barriers to using food programs as lack of transportation and the food programs having insufficient quantities of food or inconvenient operating hours. They also stated a lack of available vegetables and fruit at home, and income as barriers to eating more vegetables and fruit, but suggested a local fresh fruit and vegetable bulk-buying program called "Good Food Box" and community gardens as opportunities to help increase their vegetable and fruit intake.
Many of the barriers and opportunities identified can be addressed by working with community partners to help low-income individuals become more food secure.
To examine associations between the availability of residential-area food sources and dietary patterns among seniors.
Cross-sectional analyses. Individual-level data from the NuAge study on nutrition and healthy ageing were merged with geographic information system data on food store availability and area-level social composition. Two dietary patterns reflecting lower- and higher-quality diets (respectively designated 'western' and 'prudent') were identified from FFQ data. Two food source relative availability measures were calculated for a 500 m road-network buffer around participants' homes: (i) proportion of fast-food outlets (%FFO) relative to all restaurants and (ii) proportion of stores potentially selling healthful foods (%HFS, healthful food stores) relative to all food stores. Associations between dietary patterns and food source exposure were tested in linear regression models accounting for individual (health and sociodemographic) and area-level (socio-economic and ethnicity) covariates.
Montréal metropolitan area, Canada.
Urban-dwelling older adults (n 751), aged 68 to 84 years.
%FFO was inversely associated with prudent diet (ß = -0·105; P
This study was undertaken to understand food insecurity from the perspective of households who experienced it. The results of group interviews and personal interviews with 98 low-income households from urban and rural areas in and around Québec City, Canada, elicited the meaning of "enough food" for the households and the range of manifestations of food insecurity. Two classes of manifestations characterized the experience of food insecurity: (1) its core characteristics: a lack of food encompassing the shortage of food, the unsuitability of both food and diet and a preoccupation with continuity in access to enough food; and a lack of control of households over their food situation; and (2) a related set of potential reactions: socio-familial perturbations, hunger and physical impairment, and psychological suffering. The results substantiate the existence of food insecurity among Québecers and confirm that the nature of this experience is consistent with many of the core components identified in upstate New York. This study underlines the monotony of the diet, describes the feeling of alienation, differentiates between a lack of food and the reactions that it engenders, and emphasizes the dynamic nature of the experience.
OBJECTIVE: Comparison of household and individual food consumption. DESIGN, SETTING AND SUBJECTS: Combined household and individual food consumption survey carried out in Sweden in 1989. A random sample of 3000 subjects aged 0-74 years, the household to which the subject belonged constituted the household unit. Each household recorded all the foods it purchased over a 4-week period, except food eaten outside the home. For the selected subject, excluding children
In this article, we analyze fertility control in a rural population characterized by natural fertility, using survival analysis on a longitudinal data set at the individual level combined with food prices. Landless and semilandless families responded strongly to short-term economic stress stemming from changes in prices. The fertility response, both to moderate and large changes in food prices, was the strongest within six months after prices changed in the fall, which means that the response was deliberate. People foresaw bad times and planned their fertility accordingly. The result highlights the importance of deliberate control of the timing of childbirth before the fertility transition, not in order to achieve a certain family size but, as in this case, to reduce the negative impacts of short-term economic stress.
Economic inequality has been hypothesized to be a determinant of population health, independent of poverty and household income. We examined the association between economic inequality and child malnutrition in Ecuador. Economic inequality was measured by the Gini coefficient of household per capita consumption, estimated from the 1990 Census. Childhood stunting, assessed from height-for-age z scores, was obtained from the 1998 Living Standards Measurement Survey (LSMS). We controlled for a range of individual and household covariates, including per capita food consumption, education, housing, ethnicity, fertility, access to health services, diarrhea morbidity, child care, mother's age and diet composition. Stunting still affects 26% of children under five in Ecuador, with higher prevalence in the rural Highlands and among indigenous peoples. Maternal education, basic housing conditions, access to health services, ethnicity, fertility, maternal age and diet composition were independently associated with stunting. However, after controlling for relevant covariates, economic inequality at the provincial scale had a statistically significant deleterious effect on stunting. At municipal or local levels, inequality was not associated with stunting.
Food insecurity affected over 2.3 million Canadians in 2004. To date, the food security literature has not considered the potential impact of economic abuse on food security, but there are three ways in which these two important public health issues may be related: 1) victims of economic abuse are at risk of food insecurity when they are denied access to adequate financial resources; 2) the conditions that give rise to food insecurity may also precipitate intimate partner violence in all its forms; 3) women who leave economically abusive intimate heterosexual relationships are more likely to live in poverty and thus are at risk of food insecurity. This paper presents a case of one woman who, during a qualitative research interview, spontaneously reported economic abuse and heterosexual interpersonal violence. The economic abuse suffered by this participant appears to have affected her food security and that of her children, while her husband's was apparently unaffected. There is an urgent need to better understand the nature of intra-household food distribution in food-insecure households and the impact of economic abuse on its victims' food security. Such an understanding may lead to improved food security measurement tools and social policies to reduce food insecurity.
The prevalence of adult-level household food insecurity was examined among clients receiving outpatient diabetes health care services.
Participants were adults diagnosed with diabetes mellitus, who attended individual counselling sessions at Calgary's main clinic from January to April 2010. Clinicians were trained to administer the Household Food Security Survey Module (HFSSM), and did so with clients' assent during their scheduled sessions.
The prevalence of adult-level household food insecurity among 314 respondents was 15.0% (95% confidence interval [CI], 11.2 to 19.4); 6.7% (95% CI, 4.2 to 10.0) of clinic attendees were categorized as severely food insecure. The comparable rates obtained in Alberta in 2007 using the same instrument (HFSSM) were 5.6% and 1.2%, respectively.
Household food insecurity rates among individuals with diabetes in active care are higher than rates reported in Canadian population surveys. Severe food insecurity, indicating reduced food intake and disrupted eating patterns, may affect this population's ability to follow a pattern of healthy eating necessary for effective diabetes management. This study reinforces the importance of assessing clients' inability to access food because of financial constraints, and indicates that screening with a validated measure may facilitate identification of clients at risk.
Household food insecurity constrains food selection, but whether the dietary compromises associated with this problem heighten the risk of nutrient inadequacies is unclear. The objectives of this study were to examine the relationship between household food security status and adults' and children's dietary intakes and to estimate the prevalence of nutrient inadequacies among adults and children, differentiating by household food security status. We analyzed 24-h recall and household food security data for persons aged 1-70 y from the 2004 Canadian Community Health Survey (cycle 2.2). The relationship between adults' and children's nutrient and food intakes and household food security status was assessed using regression analysis. Estimates of the prevalence of inadequate nutrient intakes by food security status and age/sex group were calculated using probability assessment methods. Poorer dietary intakes were observed among adolescents and adults in food-insecure households and many of the differences by food security status persisted after accounting for potential confounders in multivariate analyses. Higher estimated prevalences of nutrient inadequacy were apparent among adolescents and adults in food-insecure households, with the differences most marked for protein, vitamin A, thiamin, riboflavin, vitamin B-6, folate, vitamin B-12, magnesium, phosphorus, and zinc. Among children, few differences in dietary intakes by household food security status were apparent and there was little indication of nutrient inadequacy. This study indicates that for adults and, to some degree, adolescents, food insecurity is associated with inadequate nutrient intakes. These findings highlight the need for concerted public policy responses to ameliorate household food insecurity.