USDA researchers recently used health, demographic, and food security information to look closely at the relationship between 10 chronic diseases in low-income working-age adults and the food security status of their households. They made two striking findings. First, they found differences in adult health across four levels of food security ranging from high to very low food security.
This finding is important because it suggests that food security status tracks closely with health. For example, the predicted probability of hypertension for low-income working-age adults living in a household experiencing very low food security was 10.5 percentage points higher than for those in high food-secure households, while in low-income households with marginal and low food-security, the predicted probability of hypertension was 3.5 and 5.4 percentage points, respectively, higher than in high food-secure households. Second, researchers found similar differences for all of the health conditions they examined—hypertension, coronary heart disease, hepatitis, stroke, cancer, asthma, diabetes, arthritis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, and kidney disease. In all cases, the likelihood of having the particular health condition increased as household food security worsened.
Source: USDA, 10/2/17, Food Insecurity & Chronic Disease