WEDNESDAY, April 27, 2022 (HealthDay News) — About one in five American adults suffer from food insecurity, which is a significant risk factor for delaying or forgoing medical care, according to research published in the May issue of American Journal of Public Health.
Jaclyn Bertoldo, MPH, RDN, of Johns Hopkins University in Baltimore, and colleagues assessed food insecurity in the United States in December 2020 using an online survey and examined associations with under -use of medical care during the COVID-19 pandemic.
Researchers found that in December 2020, 18.8% of 8,318 US adults surveyed said they were food insecure. Non-Hispanic, Hispanic, and low-income black respondents had high risks of food insecurity. There was a significant association between food insecurity and a greater likelihood of forgoing any type of medical care due to cost concerns.
“We already know that people who struggle to maintain a healthy diet are at higher risk for many health conditions, including those that can make them more vulnerable to COVID-19,” Bertoldo said in a statement. “Delaying or postponing care could increase the risk of complications from COVID-19 and contribute to widening health disparities during the pandemic and well after it ends.”
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