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J Nutr Educ Behav. 2011 Mar-Apr;43(2):110-5. doi: 10.1016/j.jneb.2010.06.001.

Food stamp participation is associated with fewer meals away from home, yet higher body mass index and waist circumference in a nationally representative sample.

Author information

  • 1Department of Public Health, Brody School of Medicine, East Carolina University, Greenville, NC 27834, USA . jilcotts@ecu.edu

Abstract

OBJECTIVE:

To examine associations between Food Stamp (FS) participation, meals away from home (MAFH), body mass index (BMI), and waist circumference (WC).

DESIGN:

Cross-sectional study.

SETTING:

Nationally representative.

PARTICIPANTS:

Data from low-income, FS-eligible individuals (N = 945) ages 20-65 years, responding to the 2005-2006 National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURE(S):

MAFH per week, BMI, and WC.

ANALYSIS:

Multiple linear regression models were used to examine associations between FS participation and MAFH, BMI, and WC, adjusting for age, sex, race, and education level.

RESULTS:

Food Stamp authorization was associated with fewer MAFH (P = .004). Among females, FS authorization was associated with higher BMI (P = .04) and WC (P = .04). Among females reporting amount of benefits in the prior month, more FS benefits received were associated with lower BMI (P = .03) and WC (P < .001).

CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS:

Seemingly contradictory results regarding associations between FS authorization and FS benefits received in the previous month and BMI and WC should be explored further. Effective nutrition education and environmental change strategies are needed, particularly among female FS recipients.

Copyright © 2011 Society for Nutrition Education. Published by Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

PMID:
21392714
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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