To measure prevalence and correlates of food insecurity among college students in Appalachia, compare food-insecure and food-secure students on correlates, and identify predictor variables.
Cross-sectional, online questionnaire.
University in Appalachia.
Nonprobability, random sample of 1,093 students (317 male [30.1%]; 723 females [68.4%]).
Main Outcome Measures
Food insecurity, coping strategies, money expenditure, academic progress, and demographics.
Correlational, chi-square, and regression.
A total of 239 students experienced low food security (21.9%) whereas 266 had experienced very low food security (24.3%) in the past 12 months. Predictor variables were higher money expenditure and coping strategy scale scores, lower grade point averages, male gender, receiving financial aid, fair or poor self-rated health status, and never cooking for self or others. These variables accounted for 48.1% of variance in food security scores. Most frequently used coping strategies included purchasing cheap, processed food (n = 282; 57.4%), stretching food (n = 199; 40.5%), and eating less healthy meals to eat more (n = 174; 35.4%).
Conclusions and Implications
Food-insecure students need interventions that teach budgeting skills and how to purchase and prepare healthy foods, as well as policies that increase access to food resource assistance.
To read this article in full you will need to make a payment
Purchase one-time access:Academic & Personal: 24 hour online accessCorporate R&D Professionals: 24 hour online access
SNEB Member LoginSNEB Members, full access to the journal is a member benefit. Login via the SNEB Website to access all journal content and features.
Subscribe:Subscribe to Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior
Already a print subscriber? Claim online access
Already an online subscriber? Sign in
Register: Create an account
Institutional Access: Sign in to ScienceDirect
- Definitions of food security.http://www.ers.usda.gov/topics/food…/food-security-in…/definitions-of-food-security/Date accessed: August 10, 2017
- Food security in the U.S.: measurement.http://www.ers.usda.gov/topics/food-nutrition-assistance/food-security-in-the-us/measurement.aspxDate accessed: April 15, 2017
- Financial management skills are associated with food insecurity in a sample of households with children in the United States.J Nutr. 2012; 142: 865-870
- Environmental influences on food security in high-income countries.Nutr Rev. 2010; 68: 1-29
- Poverty is not just an indicator: the relationship between income, poverty, and child well-being.Acad Pediatr. 2016; 16: S23-S29
- Food insecurity and the burden of health-related social problems in an urban youth population.J Adolesc Health. 2015; 57: 601-607
- Screening for social determinants of health among children and families living in poverty: a guide for clinicians.Curr Probl Pediatr Adolesc Health Care. 2016; 46: 135-153
- Severity of household food insecurity is positively associated with mental disorders among children and adolescents in the United States.J Nutr. 2016; 146: 2019-2026
- Food security and metabolic syndrome in U.S. adults and adolescents: findings from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey, 1999–2006.Ann Epidemiol. 2010; 20: 364-370
- Prevalence and correlates of food insecurity among students attending a midsize rural university in Oregon.J Nutr Educ Behav. 2014; 46: 209-214
- Examining the role of financial factors, resources and skills in predicting food security status among college students.Int J Consum Stud. 2014; 38: 374-384
- The prevalence of food security and insecurity among Illinois university students.J Nutr Educ Behav. 2016; 48: 376-382
- Food insecurity of campus-residing Alaskan college students, Conference Poster.J Acad Nutr Diet. 2014; 114: A94
- Food Insecurity among community college students: prevalence and association with grade point average.Comm Coll J Res Pract. 2015; 39: 515-526
- Food insecurity prevalence among college students at the University of Hawaii at Manoa.Public Health Nutr. 2009; 12: 2097-2103
- Factors related to the high rates of food insecurity among diverse, urban college freshmen.J Acad Nutr Diet. 2016; 116: 1450-1457
- North Carolina Report: 2016: Talk Poverty.https://talkpoverty.org/state-year-report/north-carolina-2016-report/Date accessed: May 29, 2017
- Food insecurity.https://www.ers.usda.gov/topics/food…/food-security…us/key-statistics-graphics.aspxDate accessed: May 30, 2017
- Internet, Phone, Mail, and Mixed-mode Surveys: The Tailored Design Method.3rd ed. John Wiley & Sons, Hoboken, NJ2009
- Maintaining food sufficiency: coping strategies identified by limited-resource individuals versus nutrition educators.J Nutr Educ Behav. 2003; 35: 179-188
- Auxiliary measures to assess factors related to food insecurity: preliminary testing and baseline characteristics of newly designed hunger-coping scales.Prev Med Rep. 2016; 4: 289-295
- National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) social support scale.http://wwwn.cdc.gov/nchs/nhanes/2007-2008/SSQ_E.htmDate accessed: April 15, 2017
- Clinical Guidelines on the Identification, Evaluation, and Treatment of Overweight and Obesity in Adults: The Evidence Report.National Institutes of Health, Bethesda, MD1998
- Spearman-Brown prophecy formula and Cronbach's alpha: different faces of reliability and opportunities for new applications.J Clin Epidemiol. 2017; 85: 45-49
- About Eating: an online program with evidence of increased food resource management skills for low-income women.J Nutr Educ Behav. 2015; 47: 265-272
Published online: December 12, 2017
Accepted: October 20, 2017
Conflict of Interest Disclosure: The authors have not stated any conflicts of interest.
© 2017 Society for Nutrition Education and Behavior. Published by Elsevier, Inc. All rights reserved.