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Healthy Eating Determinants and Food Security Resource Opportunities: Urban-Dwelling American Indian and Alaska Native Older Adults Perspectives

Published:December 22, 2021DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.jneb.2021.09.015

      Abstract

      Objective

      To explore the perspectives of urban-dwelling American Indian and Alaska Native (AI/AN) older adults regarding determinants of healthy eating, food insecurity, and opportunities for an urban clinic to improve resources.

      Methods

      Semistructured interviews (n = 24) with older adults (aged ≥ 60 years) at 1 urban AI/AN serving clinic. Telephone-based interviews were audio-recorded, professionally transcribed, and analyzed using thematic analysis.

      Results

      Four overarching themes were revealed: (1) hunger-mitigating resources exist but do not necessarily lessen food insecurity; (2) multiple layers of challenges related to social determinants of health present barriers to healthy nutrition for AI/AN older adults; (3) unique facilitators rooted in AI/AN culture can help decrease food insecurity; and (4) many clinic-based opportunities for programs to improve food insecurity exist.

      Conclusions and Implications

      Findings provide a foundation for urban-serving AI/AN clinics to develop healthy eating resources for their older adult patients. Greater benefit would result from resources that build on cultural strengths and address older adult-specific challenges to healthy eating.

      Key Words

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