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Nutrición Hospitalaria

On-line version ISSN 1699-5198Print version ISSN 0212-1611


VARGAS PUELLO, Vianny; ALVARADO ORELLANA, Sergio  and  ATALAH SAMUR, Eduardo. Food insecurity among elderly people in 15 districts of the Great Santiago area: an unresolved issue. Nutr. Hosp. [online]. 2013, vol.28, n.5, pp.1430-1437. ISSN 1699-5198.

Introduction: To experience food insecurity determines negative consequences regarding nutrition, health and general wellness among older adults and their families. In Chile it practically doesn't exist any information related to it, despite this matter represents a major public health issue in other countries in the region. Objectives: To determine the prevalence of food insecurity and it's relation with socio-demographic, economic and nutritional factors among older adults residing in medium-low and low-income status districts, in the Great Santiago area. Materials and methods: A cross-sectional observational study in 344 older adults, between 65 and 74 year-old; a socioeconomic, demographic, nutritional and food-insecurity survey at the homes (HFIAS). A prevalence of food insecurity and it relation with the independent variables was determined, by means of multi-variety logistic regression models. Results: The 40.4% of the sample presented food insecurity (95% IC 35.2-45.6%), predominantly of the mild type, with a higher proportion of women, at the limit of the statistic significance. The probability of perceiving food insecurity was significantly associated to low family income (OR 4.2 IC 2.1-8.6), with a greater number of members in the home (OR 2.4), malnutrition by deficit and/or excess (OR 2.0), not to be the owner of the house (OR 2.0), and low individual income (OR 1.8). Conclusions: There exists a high prevalence of food insecurity among this population, which is associated with socio-demographic, economic and nutritional status. The food security represents an important public health and nutritional issue in the country, which needs to be investigated further.

Keywords : Food insecurity; Elderly; Nutrition; Chile.

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