The Association Between Food Insecurity in Childhood and Mental Illness in Adolescence Within a US Urban Population 公开

Eckhaus, Lindsay (Spring 2018)

Permanent URL: https://etd.library.emory.edu/concern/etds/2227mp69j?locale=zh
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Abstract

Food insecurity, defined as limited access to food due to economic restraint, affects millions of American families. Food insecurity is a social stressor that can lead to negative health outcomes, including mental illness, among children and adolescents. In this paper, we investigate the association between food insecurity in childhood and depression and anxiety in adolescence. We use longitudinal data from the Fragile Families and Child Wellbeing Study, a nationally representative sample of non-marital births in the US. The relationship between food insecurity at age 3 and mental illness symptomatology at age 15 was assessed through linear regression models. We found that food insecurity among children is associated with an increase in depression and anxiety scores among adolescents. In the analysis, we also tested for interaction with sex and for mediation by psychosocial stress variables, including maternal mental illness, parenting stress, and maternal psychological aggression toward children. The interaction and mediation assessments were not statistically significant. Future research should test for alternate pathways and for interaction with other social stressors that may influence the relationship between food insecurity and mental illness.

Table of Contents

Chapter I. Background ………………………………………………………………..1

Chapter II. Manuscript ………………………………………………………………11

            Abstract ……………………………………………………………………...12

            Introduction ……………………………………………………………….....13

            Methods …………………………………………………………………….. 16

            Results ……………………………………………………………………….22

            Discussion …………………………………………………………………...25

References ………………………………………………………………….. 32

Tables ………………………………………………………………………..39

Chapter III. Public Health Implications ……………………………………………..43

Appendices …………………………………………………………………………..45

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