Food Security and Diet Among American Indians in the Midwest

  • Kelly Berryhill
  • Jason Hale
  • Brian Chase
  • Lauren Clark
  • Jianghua He
  • Christine M. Daley
Original Paper
  • 27 Downloads

Abstract

The purpose of this study was to determine levels of food security among American Indians (AI) living in the Midwest and possible correlations between food security levels and various health outcomes, diet, and demographic variables. This study used a cross-sectional design to determine health behaviors among AI. Participants (n = 362) were recruited by AI staff through various cultural community events in the Midwest, such as powwows and health fairs. Inclusion criteria included the following: age 18 years or older, self-identify as an AI, and willing to participate in the survey. Of all participants, 210 (58%) had either low or very low food security, with 96 in the very low category (26.5%). Participants with very low food security tended to have significantly more chronic conditions. Additional significant differences for very low food security existed by demographic variables, including having no insurance (p < 0.0001) or having a regular primary care provider (p = 0.0354). There was also a significant difference between food security levels and the consumption of fast food within the past week (p value = 0.0420), though no differences were found in fruit and vegetable consumption. AI in our sample had higher levels of food insecurity than those reported in the literature for other racial/ethnic groups. AI and non-Native health professionals should be aware of the gravity of food insecurity and the impact it has on overall health. Additional research is needed to determine specific aspects of food insecurity affecting different Native communities to develop appropriate interventions.

Keywords

American Indian Food security Community-based participatory research Surveys And questionnaires 

Notes

Acknowledgements

The authors would like to thank the reservation and urban American Indian communities who participated in this study.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

References

  1. 1.
    Pinstrup-Andersen, P. (2009). Food security: Definition and measurement. Food Security, 1(1), 5–7.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  2. 2.
    Seligman, H. K., Laraia, B. A., & Kushel, M. B. (2010). Food insecurity is associated with chronic disease among low-income NHANES participants. The Journal of Nutrition, 140(2), 304–310.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  3. 3.
    Blue, B., Jernigan, V., Wetherill, M. S., Hearod, J., et al. (2017). Food insecurity and chronic diseases among American Indians in rural Oklahoma: The THRIVE study. American Journal of Public Health, 107(3), 441–446.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. 4.
    Bauer, K. W., Widome, R., Himes, J. H., et al. (2012). High food insecurity and its correlates among families living on a rural American Indian Reservation. American Journal of Public Health, 102(7), 1346–1352.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  5. 5.
    Gundersen, C., & Kreider, B. (2009). Bounding the effects of food insecurity on children’s health outcomes. Journal of Health Economics, 28(5), 971–983.CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  6. 6.
    Gundersen, C. (2009). Measuring the extent, depth, and severity of food insecurity: An application to American Indians in the USA. Journal of Population Economics, 21(1), 191–215.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  7. 7.
    USDA, & USDOA. (2015). Economic research service: Food security in the U.S. key statistics and graphics. Washington, DC: USDA, and USDOAGoogle Scholar
  8. 8.
    NRC. (2006). Food insecurity and hunger in the United States: An assessment of the measure. Washington, DC: The National Academies PressGoogle Scholar
  9. 9.
    Gorton, D., Bullen, C. R., & Mhurchu, C. N. (2010). Environmental Influences on food secuirty in high-income countries. Nutrition Reviews, 68, 1–29CrossRefPubMedGoogle Scholar
  10. 10.
    O’Connell, M., Buchwald, D. S., & Duncan, G. E. (2011). Food access and cost in American Indian communities in Washington State. Journal of The American Dietetic Association, 111(9), 1375–1379.CrossRefPubMedPubMedCentralGoogle Scholar
  11. 11.
    Nord, M., & Prell, M. (2007) Struggling to feed the family: What does it mean to be food insecure? Retrieved from https://www.ers.usda.gov/amber-waves/2007/june/struggling-to-feed-the-family-what-does-it-mean-to-be-food-insecure/. Accessed 24 July 2017.
  12. 12.
    NCAI Policy Research Center, & NCOAI. (2012). Demographic profile of Indian Country. Washington, DC: NCAI Policy Research Center and NCOAIGoogle Scholar
  13. 13.
    USDA, & USDOA. (2012). U.S. household food security survey module: Six-item short form. Washington, DC: USDA and USDOAGoogle Scholar
  14. 14.
    IHS. (2010). Special diabetes program for Indians toolkits. Retrieved from https://www.ihs.gov/sdpi/sdpi-toolkits/diabetes-prevention-program-toolkit/appendices/. Accessed 24 July 2017.

Copyright information

© This is a U.S. Government work and not under copyright protection in the US; foreign copyright protection may apply 2018

Authors and Affiliations

  • Kelly Berryhill
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
    • 4
  • Jason Hale
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
    • 4
  • Brian Chase
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
    • 5
  • Lauren Clark
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
    • 5
  • Jianghua He
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
    • 5
  • Christine M. Daley
    • 1
    • 2
    • 3
    • 4
    • 6
  1. 1.University of Kansas Medical CenterKansas CityUSA
  2. 2.American Indian Health Research and Education AllianceKansas CityUSA
  3. 3.Center for American Indian Community HealthKansas CityUSA
  4. 4.Department of Family MedicineUniversity of Kansas Medical CenterKansas CityUSA
  5. 5.Department of BiostatisticsUniversity of Kansas Medical CenterKansas CityUSA
  6. 6.Indigenous StudiesUniversity of KansasLawrenceUSA

Personalised recommendations