Individual Weight Change Is Associated With Household Food Security Status

Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy, Tufts University, Boston, MA 02111, USA.
Journal of Nutrition (Impact Factor: 3.88). 05/2006; 136(5):1395-400.
Source: PubMed


This study examined the relation between household food security status and current measured weight and change in self-reported weight over 12 mo using data from the 1999-2000 and 2001-2002 National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys. Current measured BMI categories were as follows: underweight (<18.5 kg/m(2)), overweight (> or =25 kg/m(2)), and obese (> or =30 kg/m(2)). Change in self-reported weight used 2 cut-off points, i.e., a gain/loss of at least 2.27 kg (5 lb) and at least 4.54 kg (10 lb). Household food security categories were as follows: fully secure, marginally secure, insecure without hunger, and insecure with hunger. Multivariate analyses were adjusted for race/ethnicity, household income, education level, and current health status. Compared with women in households that were fully food secure, women in households that were marginally food secure [odds ratio (OR) 1.58] and food insecure without hunger (OR 1.76) were significantly more likely to be obese. Compared with women in households that were fully food secure, those in households that were marginally food secure were significantly more likely to gain at least 4.54 kg (OR 1.68). Compared with men in households that were fully food secure, men in households that were marginally food secure were more likely to be obese and to gain at least 4.54 kg, but these effects were smaller in magnitude than those for women and insignificant in some specifications. This study corroborates previous cross-sectional associations between intermediate levels of food insecurity and obesity for women, and it finds an association between intermediate levels of food insecurity and 12-mo weight gain for women.

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Available from: Parke Wilde, Apr 03, 2015
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    • "As a result, women in food insecure households are at risk of nutrient deficiencies in Vitamin A, folate, iron, and magnesium (Tarasuk & Beaton, 1999). We suspect that these behavioral patterns undergird the unexplained sex differences in the association between food insecurity and weight (Adams et al., 2003; Dinour et al., 2007; Lyons et al., 2008; Olson, 1999; Townsend et al., 2001; Wilde & Peterman, 2006) and why food insecurity is typically not correlated with children's weight (Gundersen et al., 2009; Martin & Ferris, 2007), but for an exception see Gundersen and Kreider (2009). Unfortunately we do not have direct measures on people's dietary behavior or food insecurity management practices to fully explore this sequence, but we do have the requisite data to test our primary hypothesis: H1: There is a statistically significant association between food insecurity and being overweight or obese for mothers, but not child-free women or all men. "
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    ABSTRACT: This paper investigates one explanation for the consistent observation of a strong, negative correlation in the United States between income and obesity among women, but not men. We argue that a key factor is the gendered expectation that mothers are responsible for feeding their children. When income is limited and households face food shortages, we predict that an enactment of these gendered norms places mothers at greater risk for obesity relative to child-free women and all men. We adopt an indirect approach to study these complex dynamics using data on men and women of childrearing age and who are household heads or partners in the 1999-2003 waves of the Panel Study of Income Dynamics (PSID). We find support for our prediction: Food insecure mothers are more likely than child-free men and women and food insecure fathers to be overweight or obese and to gain more weight over four years. The risks are greater for single mothers relative to mothers in married or cohabiting relationships. Supplemental models demonstrate that this pattern cannot be attributed to post-pregnancy biological changes that predispose mothers to weight gain or an evolutionary bias toward biological children. Further, results are unchanged with the inclusion of physical activity, smoking, drinking, receipt of food stamps, or Women, Infants and Children (WIC) nutritional program participation. Obesity, thus, offers a physical expression of the vulnerabilities that arise from the intersection of gendered childcare expectations and poverty.
    Social Science [?] Medicine 12/2011; 74(11):1754-64. DOI:10.1016/j.socscimed.2011.11.013 · 2.89 Impact Factor
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    • "Data from the U.S. National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys (NHANES) reveal that ~ 16% of women and ~15% of men were marginally to fully food insecure [52]. Individuals with marginal food insecurity were more likely to be obese and to gain weight compared to those from food secure households [52]. Moreover, food insecurity is associated with an increased likelihood of having diabetes [53]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Bernard Lonergan's cognitive theory challenges us to raise questions about both the cognitive process through which obesity is perceived as a behaviour change issue and the objectivity of such a moral judgment. Lonergan's theory provides the theoretical tools to affirm that anti-fat discrimination, in the United States of America and in many industrialized countries, is the result of both a group bias that resists insights into the good of other groups and a general bias of anti-intellectualism that tends to set common sense against insights that require any thorough scientific analyses. While general bias diverts the public's attention away from the true aetiology of obesity, group bias sustains an anti-fat culture that subtly legitimates discriminatory practices and policies against obese people. Although anti-discrimination laws may seem to be a reasonable way of protecting obese and overweight individuals from discrimination, obesity bias can be best addressed by reframing the obesity debate from an environmental perspective from which tools and strategies to address both the social and individual determinants of obesity can be developed. Attention should not be concentrated on individuals' behaviour as it is related to lifestyle choices, without giving due consideration to the all-encompassing constraining factors which challenge the social and rational blindness of obesity bias.
    Philosophy Ethics and Humanities in Medicine 12/2011; 6(1):16. DOI:10.1186/1747-5341-6-16
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    • "This may be due to an increased consumption of cheaper and refined carbohydrates, sweetened beverages, high-fat meats, and lower consumption of fruits and vegetables because of monetary constraints. It is known that poorer families may substitute higher-quality foods for cheaper, lower-quality foods and this practice has been associated with overweight and obesity in developed countries [66-68]. "
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    ABSTRACT: Childhood overweight is not restricted to developed countries: a number of lower- and middle-income countries are struggling with the double burden of underweight and overweight. Another public health problem that concerns both developing and, to a lesser extent, developed countries is food insecurity. This study presents a comparative gender-based analysis of the association between household food insecurity and overweight among 10-to-11-year-old children living in the Canadian province of Québec and in the country of Jamaica. Analyses were performed using data from the 2008 round of the Québec Longitudinal Study of Child Development and the Jamaica Youth Risk and Resiliency Behaviour Survey of 2007. Cross-sectional data were obtained from 1190 10-year old children in Québec and 1674 10-11-year-old children in Jamaica. Body mass index was derived using anthropometric measurements and overweight was defined using Cole's age- and sex-specific criteria. Questionnaires were used to collect data on food insecurity. The associations were examined using chi-square tests and multivariate regression models were used to estimate odds ratios (OR) and 95% confidence intervals. The prevalence of overweight was 26% and 11% (p < 0.001) in the Québec and Jamaican samples, respectively. In Québec, the adjusted odds ratio for being overweight was 3.03 (95% CI: 1.8-5.0) among children living in food-insecure households, in comparison to children living in food-secure households. Furthermore, girls who lived in food-insecure households had odds of 4.99 (95% CI: 2.4-10.5) for being overweight in comparison to girls who lived in food-secure households; no such differences were observed among boys. In Jamaica, children who lived in food-insecure households had significantly lower odds (OR 0.65, 95% CI: 0.4-0.9) for being overweight in comparison to children living in food-secure households. No gender differences were observed in the relationship between food-insecurity and overweight/obesity among Jamaican children. Public health interventions which aim to stem the epidemic of overweight/obesity should consider gender differences and other family factors associated with overweight/obesity in both developed and developing countries.
    BMC Public Health 03/2011; 11(1):199. DOI:10.1186/1471-2458-11-199 · 2.26 Impact Factor
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