AIDS and Behavior

, Volume 21, Issue 12, pp 3506–3514 | Cite as

Food Insecurity and Aging Outcomes in Older Adults Living with HIV

  • Nancy A. Hessol
  • Roland Zepf
  • Elizabeth Zobell
  • Sheri D. Weiser
  • Malcolm D. John
Original Paper


Little is known about food insecurity and its association with geriatric outcomes in older people living with HIV (PLWH). This was a cross-sectional study of 230 HIV-infected patients aged 50 and older recruited in December 2012 through June 2016. Poisson logistic regression models estimated the prevalence ratio (PR) and 95% confidence intervals (CI) for the association between food insecurity and the following geriatric outcomes: frailty, physical health and function, social support, mental health and cognition, and behavioral health. 157 (68%) participants were food secure, 35 (15%) had low food security, and 38 (17%) had very low food security. After adjusting the analyses for other significant covariates, at risk alcohol or drug use (PR = 3.14; 95% CI 1.75–5.64), being sedentary (PR = 3.30; 95% CI 1.09–10.00) depressive symptoms (PR = 1.77; 95% CI 1.13–2.76), and dependent instrumental activities of daily living (PR = 2.46; 95% CI 1.13–5.36) were significantly associated with very low food security. These results highlight a need for structural HIV interventions that incorporate targeted food assistance strategies for older PLWH.


Depression Food insecurity Geriatrics HIV Substance use 



We wish to thank Mss. Amanda Hutton-Parrott and Catherine Lyons and Drs. Brad Hare and Meredith Greene for their contribution to the Silver Project. This research was funded by Grant No. A116894 from the University of California HIV/AIDS Research Program (CHRP).

Compliance with ethical standards

Conflict of interest

Dr. Malcolm D. John is on the speaker’s bureau and advisory boards of Gilead Sciences, Inc.; Merck & Co., Inc.; and ViiV Healthcare. The remaining authors declare that they have no conflicts of interest.

Ethical approval

All procedures performed in studies involving human participants were in accordance with the ethical standards of the institutional and/or national research committee and with the 1964 Helsinki declaration and its later amendments or comparable ethical standards.

Informed consent

All study protocols were reviewed and approved by the UCSF Committee on Human Research and determined to be standard of care and thus exempt from informed consent.


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Copyright information

© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC 2017

Authors and Affiliations

  • Nancy A. Hessol
    • 1
    • 2
  • Roland Zepf
    • 2
  • Elizabeth Zobell
    • 2
  • Sheri D. Weiser
    • 2
  • Malcolm D. John
    • 2
  1. 1.Department of Clinical PharmacyUniversity of California San FranciscoSan FranciscoUSA
  2. 2.Department of MedicineUniversity of California San FranciscoSan FranciscoUSA

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