The Hunger and Overweight Paradox

by Brooke on January 28, 2014

Both food insecurity and being overweight are linked by numerous factors.  Within the United States alone, there is an estimated 16 million children that are food insecure.  Food insecurity means that a family or individual is faced with the limited or uncertain availability of nutritionally adequate and safe food or is unable to acquire acceptable food in socially acceptable ways.

Food insecurity and obesity can co-exist within the same individual, family, and/or community.  This relationship seems counterintuitive, but a few studies have shown a link between the two.  To help better explain this Hunger and Overweight Paradox check out the “Nourish to Flourish” diagram below found on the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics website.



{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

Dagny Kight January 28, 2014 at 7:50 pm

I teach GED classes at supportive housing facilities in Uptown. All my students are very overweight except one. They all receive SNAP benefits which in Illinois is about $180/month for an individual. But having money to buy food is just one factor here. Taking an overall view of these peoples’ lives affords us greater insight into the problem.

I have linked above to a blog post I wrote awhile back. You’ve given me some thoughts for another one! Thanks.


Brooke January 29, 2014 at 3:13 am

Hi Dagny,

I like that you brought up Abraham Maslow’s Hierarchy of Needs in your blog post. I try to teach this concept to the interns I work with at a low income pediatric clinic. Healthy eating is a full time job and it can’t always be the main focus for many individuals and families.


Dagny Kight January 28, 2014 at 8:48 pm

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