• Food Insecurity Prevalence and its Related Factors in Households in Ahvaz, Iran

    Mal J Nutr 19(3): 363 – 369, 2013

    Food Insecurity Prevalence and its Related Factors in Households in Ahvaz, Iran 
    Abedi lm, Abbaspor Z2*, Montazeri 52, Vakili M3 & Haghigheizadeh M4
    1 Midwifery Department, Reproductive Health Promotion Research Center, Ahvaz jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, Ahvaz, Iran
    2 Reproductive Health Promotion Research Center, Ahvaz jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, Ahvaz, Iran
    3 Nutrition Department, Ahvaz jundishapur University of Medical Sciences, Ahvaz, Iran
    4 Statistics Department, Ahvaz jundisluipur University of Medical Sciences, Ahvaz, Iran

    ABSTRACT

    Introduction: Household food security is defined as accessibility of adequate, safe and nutritious food for all people, at all times, to fulfill their dietary needs and food preferences for a healthy and active life. The primary aim of this study was to assess the prevalence of household food insecurity and related factors in Ahvaz, Iran. Methods: A total of 1,260 households from 20 health clinics in Ahvaz, Iran were identified for this cross-sectional study. Sixty-three women from each centre were selected randomly for the interview. A socio-demographic questionnaire and the USDA 18-item questionnaire on food insecurity were used for data collection. The data were analysed using the descriptive statistics and the Chi-square test and logistic regression. Results: Out of the total of 1,256 households, 440 (35%) were food secure, 422(33.6%) had food insecurity without hunger, 294 (23.4%) showed moderate food insecurity while 100 (8.0%) had food insecurity with hunger. Families with lower income had a greater risk for food insecurity (OR= 16.773, CI= 7.98-35.24, p<0.001). Families with 1-3 children and families with a bigger dimension had greater risk for food insecurity (OR= 0.1666, CI= 0.076- 0.360, p<0.001) and (OR= 0.61, CI= 0.47-0.78, p<0.001) respectively. Conclusion: This study showed that the prevalence of food insecurity in Ahvaz, Iran is high due to the current tight economic situation faced by the people. As food insecurity over a long period could have serious deleterious effects, especially on children, the authorities should pay close attention to addressing this problem. 

    Keywords: Food insecurity, households, Iran, prevalence

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