Objectives. To examine emerging adults' experiences of food insecurity in relation to measures of diet quality, food literacy, home food availability, and health behaviors.Methods. We used EAT 2010-2018 (Eating and Activity over Time) study data on 1568 participants who completed surveys as adolescents in 2009 to 2010 and follow-up surveys in 2017 to 2018 (mean age = 22.0 ±2.0 years; 58% female). At baseline, participants were recruited from 20 urban schools in Minneapolis-St Paul, Minnesota. Food insecurity was defined by emerging adult report of both eating less than they thought they should and not eating when hungry because of lack of money.Results. The prevalence at follow up of experiencing food insecurity in the past year was 23.3% among emerging adults. Food insecurity was associated with poorer diet quality (e.g., less vegetables and whole grains, more sugar-sweetened drinks and added sugars), lower home availability of healthy foods, skipping breakfast, frequently eating at fast-food restaurants, binge eating, binge drinking, and substance use (all P < .01).Conclusions. Assistance programs and policies are needed to address food insecurity among emerging adults and should be coordinated with other services to protect health.
PubMed: MeSH publication types
- Journal Article