Impact of Food Insecurity on Health

indirect impact of food security on health

The staggering growth of food insecurity figures is an alarming issue that the world has been facing for a long time now. For years now we have only observed a steep climb in the global food insecurity figures. People residing in Impoverished areas such as war zones and exceedingly poor regions of the world are forced to go on with their lives on empty stomachs and unbearable living conditions due to a lack of access to nutritionally balanced diets.

More than 820 million people all over the world are suffering from hunger and lack access to a regular supply of food that can suffice the food demand. It is high time that we realize the serious detrimental impact of food insecurity on health and take necessary measures in order to cease the growth of global food insecurity numbers.

Impact of Food Insecurity on Health & Well-Being

There is no denying the fact that food insecurity leaves some major long-lasting impact on the general health and well-being of the people residing with food-scarce conditions. Prolonged periods of food insecurity contribute to the spreading of lethal diseases that can claim many lives. Having regular access to a nutritionally balanced diet is essential for maintaining good health hence, with food insecurity maintaining good health becomes next to impossible.

Furthermore, people who are suffering from food insecurity are already burdened by a variety of factors such as improper housing facilities and limited financial resources which leads to poor disease management capabilities and the mortality rate shoots up.

An ample amount of studies have revealed that people residing in low-income and food-scarce areas have relatively worse health outcomes than people belonging to affluent backgrounds.

Food insecurity doesn’t just impact one’s physical well-being, but it leaves everlasting marks on one’s mental well-being as well. Some serious emotional and behavioral problems have been observed in children suffering from food insecurity and poverty. This emotional trauma of not being able to afford a basic necessity such as food lives on with these children and in most cases, they are scarred for life.

Last but not the least, adults facing food insecurity are prone to a number of life-threatening diseases mostly induced by excessive emotional stress such as heart failure, diabetes, poor health outcomes, and obesity in women which eventually leads to early death.

Diseases and Health Condition Data Regarding Food Insecurity

Study the chart below for getting a rough idea of the health consequences of food insecurity.

Children Adults Senior Citizens
Reduced birth weight Increased risk of various types of cancers Heart failure due to congestion
Iron deficiency leading to anaemic conditions Arthritis Asthma
Increased chances of birth defects Asthma Severe depression
Low bone density (among boys) Renal failure and kidney-related issues Gum disorders
Reduced physical exposure Heart diseases Hypertension
Increased chances of developing behavioral problems (ADHD, ASD) Pulmonary disorders Reduced intake of essential nutrients and required calories leads to lethal diseases
Prone to mental health problems (depression, anxiety disorder) Hepatitis Osteoporosis and skeletal disorders
Poor and unmet dietary demand Diabetes Pulmonary and arterial diseases
Improper oral health Hypertension and stress-induced diseases Limited functioning and physical activity
Increased frequency of fevers Poor sleep schedule leads to bad health outcomes Dementia and Alzheimer
Poor gut health Obesity (mainly in women) Unstable blood pressure
Asthma Suicidal tendencies Overall deteriorating health outcomes

Direct Health Consequences of High Prices of Food

Food prices have always been the primary determinant of food utilization and consumption patterns. Currently, global inflation and skyrocketing prices of food have impacted the consumption of food beyond one’s imagination. Even a middle-class family finds it challenging to acquire a proper meal three times a day.

Now imagine the horrible living conditions due to the lack of access to food for families living below the line of poverty! The prolonged episodes of food insecurity due to insanely high food prices render these families helpless and make food access a faraway dream for them. Due to this, they are exposed to direct health consequences and increased susceptibility to various diseases mentioned above.

In addition to them, the additional burden of high food prices and other financial stresses results in a lack of quality healthcare for these families.

Frequently Asked Questions

What are the impacts of food insecurity on health?

Most of the studies conducted regarding the impact of food insecurity on health reveal that children are the most affected group. Food insecurity can be held responsible for a number of health conditions in children such as serious birth defects, insufficient nutrient intake, anemia, mental problems, and undeveloped cognitive skills.

What are the disadvantages of food insecurity on health?

Food insecurity indirectly contributes to stress, prolonged periods of hunger, and insufficient nutrition intake which often leads to higher susceptibility to lethal diseases and worse health conditions in general.

What is food insecurity and how does it impact human health?

Food insecurity is a condition in which an individual lacks access to a sufficient supply of food in order to meet their dietary demands due to limited financial resources and other factors. Food insecurity is highly detrimental to human health as it poses some serious risks to human health including mental and physical problems.

What are the 4 factors that influence food security?

The fundamental 4 factors that influence food security are food availability, food access, food utilization, and management of food sources.

How does poverty affect health and well-being?

Super congested and unclean living spaces majorly contribute to the spreading of various airborne and waterborne diseases such as tuberculosis, cholera, and multiple lethal respiratory infections. Likewise, lack of access to clean water and a proper nutritionally balanced diet leads to health issues and ailments.

End Note on Impact of Food Insecurity on Health

The negative and serious impact of food insecurity on health is pretty evident in current times. People coming from low-income and food-scarce families are highly vulnerable to a number of health risks and diseases that include chronic disorders, heart diseases, emotional stress leading to mental problems, and development delays mainly in children.

Furthermore, prolonged periods of suffering from food insecurity result in insufficient intake of essential nutrients and required calories which eventually leads to early mortality and bad health outcomes in general. It is high time that we realize this alarming situation and move toward finding solutions to tackle food insecurity for those in need.

In case you want to contribute to the cause of eliminating food insecurity, you are more than welcome to join forces with us! Through your funds, you can support our food aid-related projects such as food drives, food distribution, and monthly food ration projects in order to make food access a reality for those suffering from food insecurity.

Come forward and play your part as an individual by donating to us in order to bring about a change on a large scale!


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