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Special Issue "Dietary Behaviors and Health Outcomes in Low-Income Populations"

A special issue of International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (ISSN 1660-4601). This special issue belongs to the section "Health Behavior, Chronic Disease and Health Promotion".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (21 October 2021).

Special Issue Editor

Dr. Rickelle Richards
E-Mail Website
Guest Editor
Department of Nutrition, Dietetics and Food Science, Brigham Young University, S233 Eyring Science Center, Provo, UT 84602, USA
Interests: food insecurity; low-income populations; homelessness; college students
Special Issues and Collections in MDPI journals

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

I invite you to consider submitting a paper to a Special Issue in the International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health (IJERPH) entitled “Dietary Behaviors and Health Outcomes in Low-Income Populations.”

In 2019, the United Nations estimated that 8.2% of people globally were living in poverty and 25.9% were food insecure, with these numbers projected to increase as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic (United Nations Sustainable Development Goals Report, 2020). Previous qualitative and quantitative research has suggested that low-income populations alter dietary behaviors as a result of inadequate income or limited access to food, which in turn has been shown to negatively impact health. Research is needed to further evaluate the dietary behaviors of low-income populations and how this affects health, as a means to better understand the impact of poverty globally and how to best address it.  

Manuscript submissions for this Special Issue may be based on qualitative, quantitative, or mixed methods original research or secondary data analyses (including reviews) that evaluate:

  • Dietary behaviors such as food choices, food access, eating patterns, or other dietary behaviors
  • Health outcomes such as body mass index or other anthropometric measures, diabetes, heart disease or other physical health outcomes, and mental health outcomes (depression, anxiety, etc.)

Low-income populations can include samples from across the life-span, including pregnancy, young children, pre-adolescents, adolescents, young adults or college students, adults, and older adults, and life situations such as homelessness and the use of food assistance programs. Articles related to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on dietary behaviors and health outcomes in low-income populations are also welcomed.

Dr. Rickelle Richards
Guest Editor

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 2300 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Keywords

  • food insecurity
  • poverty
  • homelessness
  • food assistance programs
  • eating patterns
  • food choices
  • food access
  • dietary behaviors
  • physical health outcomes
  • mental health outcomes

Published Papers (4 papers)

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Research

Article
Cooking, Shopping, and Eating Behaviors of African American and Hispanic Families: Implications for a Culturally Appropriate Meal Kit Intervention
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(18), 9827; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18189827 - 17 Sep 2021
Viewed by 654
Abstract
Families with low incomes face barriers to preparing healthy meals, including decreased food access and limited time, and may turn to fast, low-quality, and inexpensive foods. Affordable and accessible meal kits may reduce these barriers. The objective of this study was to explore [...] Read more.
Families with low incomes face barriers to preparing healthy meals, including decreased food access and limited time, and may turn to fast, low-quality, and inexpensive foods. Affordable and accessible meal kits may reduce these barriers. The objective of this study was to explore the cooking, eating, and shopping behaviors of African American (AA) and Hispanic participants living in the United States with low incomes and determine the knowledge of and preferences for a culturally appropriate meal kit intervention. Trained researchers conducted focus groups using a semi-structured questionnaire with AA and Hispanic food preparers with low incomes. Participant cooking, eating, and shopping behaviors and knowledge of and preferences for a culturally appropriate meal kit intervention were evaluated using thematic analysis. AA participants (n = 16) reported cooking on average 2 to 3 days per week and more often on weekends. Hispanic participants (n = 15) reported cooking 5 days per week and more often during the week. Both groups identified cost as the number one consideration when shopping. Most were unfamiliar with meal kits but indicated they would try an affordable meal kit. AA and Hispanic participants differed in their cooking, eating, and shopping behaviors but were equally interested in trying meal kits if affordable and culturally appropriate. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dietary Behaviors and Health Outcomes in Low-Income Populations)
Article
Adolescent-Reported Latino Fathers’ Food Parenting Practices and Family Meal Frequency Are Associated with Better Adolescent Dietary Intake
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(15), 8226; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18158226 - 03 Aug 2021
Viewed by 536
Abstract
Most studies of food-related parenting practices, parental meal involvement, and adolescent dietary intake have focused on maternal influences; studies of paternal influences, particularly among marginalized groups, are lacking. This study examined lower-income, Latino fathers’ food parenting practices and involvement in planning meals, buying/preparing [...] Read more.
Most studies of food-related parenting practices, parental meal involvement, and adolescent dietary intake have focused on maternal influences; studies of paternal influences, particularly among marginalized groups, are lacking. This study examined lower-income, Latino fathers’ food parenting practices and involvement in planning meals, buying/preparing foods, and family meal frequency, separately and in combination, to identify relationships with adolescent food intake. Baseline data were used from Latino adolescents (10–14 years, n = 191, 49% boys) participating with their fathers in a community-based overweight/obesity prevention intervention. Fathers reported sociodemographic characteristics. Adolescents reported frequency of fathers’ food parenting practices, fathers’ food/meal involvement, and family meals and participated in 24 h dietary recalls. The analysis included regression models using GLM (generalized linear mixed model) and PLM (post GLM processing) procedures. Most fathers were married, employed full-time, and had annual incomes below USD 50,000. Favorable fathers’ food parenting practices were associated with adolescent intake of more fruit and vegetables and fewer sugar-sweetened beverages, sweets/salty snacks, and less fast food (p < 0.05 or p < 0.01). No independent effects of family meal frequency or fathers’ food/meal involvement were observed on adolescent dietary outcomes. Additional analyses showed favorable food parenting practices in combination with frequent family meals were associated with adolescents having a higher intake of fruit (p = 0.011). Latino fathers can have an important positive influence on adolescent dietary intake. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dietary Behaviors and Health Outcomes in Low-Income Populations)
Article
In Their Own Words: Parents and Key Informants’ Views on Nutrition Education and Family Health Behaviors
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(15), 8155; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18158155 - 01 Aug 2021
Viewed by 636
Abstract
Parents, health professionals, and communities are integral in the development of nutrition behaviors that reduce children’s risk for high body mass index (BMI) and chronic disease. The aim of this study was to conduct formative evaluations with key health informants and parents to [...] Read more.
Parents, health professionals, and communities are integral in the development of nutrition behaviors that reduce children’s risk for high body mass index (BMI) and chronic disease. The aim of this study was to conduct formative evaluations with key health informants and parents to understand the specific strategies that families use at mealtimes to promote their family’s health, along with the barriers they face in attending current nutrition education programming. Focus groups (in English and Spanish) were conducted with parents (n = 22; 63.64% Black/African American, 13.64% Black but not African American, 18.18% Hispanic/Latinx) whose household was located in a community where 50% of residents’ gross income was ≤185% of the federal poverty level. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with six key informants with expertise in family health and nutrition. Inductive thematic analysis was used to identify themes across interviews. Six general themes emerged from the interviews including perceptions of health, relationships, health behaviors, facilitators, barriers, and desired changes. Across the six themes, participants responded with suggestions for community-based health promotion programs such as incorporating a broader definition of health to better address the individual and systemic barriers that perpetuate health inequities and make healthy eating difficult. Participants identified stress reduction, health literacy, and cooking knowledge as areas of interest for future programming. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dietary Behaviors and Health Outcomes in Low-Income Populations)
Article
Timing of WIC Enrollment and Responsive Feeding among Low-Income Women in the US
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2021, 18(14), 7695; https://0-doi-org.brum.beds.ac.uk/10.3390/ijerph18147695 - 20 Jul 2021
Viewed by 506
Abstract
We examined associations between the timing of The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) enrollment and responsive feeding and assessed food security as a possible effect modifier. We used data from the nationally representative WIC Infant and Toddler Feeding [...] Read more.
We examined associations between the timing of The Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) enrollment and responsive feeding and assessed food security as a possible effect modifier. We used data from the nationally representative WIC Infant and Toddler Feeding Practices Study-2. Our sample includes women-infant dyads interviewed through the first 13 months of age (n = 1672). We dichotomized WIC enrollment as occurring prenatally or after childbirth. The responsive feeding outcome was feeding on demand versus feeding on schedule. We used covariate-adjusted logistic regressions. Of women, 61.8% had a high school education or less and 62.9% lived at 75% or less of the federal poverty guideline. The majority (84.5%) of women enrolled in WIC before childbirth. In unadjusted estimates, 34% of women who enrolled prenatally practiced responsive feeding, compared to 25% of women who enrolled after childbirth. We found no evidence of food security as an effect modifier. In adjusted estimates, women who enrolled in WIC prenatally had 78% higher odds of practicing responsive feeding (OR: 1.78, 95% CI: 1.16, 2.73), compared to women who enrolled after childbirth. Prenatal enrollment in WIC was associated with higher odds of responsive feeding. Future studies should examine how the timing of WIC enrollment relates to responsive feeding in older children and over time. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dietary Behaviors and Health Outcomes in Low-Income Populations)
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