TitleFood insecurity and physical activity insecurity among rural Oregon families.
Publication TypeJournal Article
Year of Publication2017
AuthorsGunter, K, Jackson, JA, Tomayko, EJ, John, DH
JournalPrev Med Rep
Date Published2017 Dec

Among rural families, rates of both child obesity and household food insecurity (FI) are higher compared to non-rural families. These disparities result from a complex interplay of social and environmental conditions that influence behavior. The Transtheoretical Model suggests individual readiness to change underlies success in modifying obesity-preventing behaviors; however, whether an association between readiness to change obesity-related behaviors and FI status among rural families exists is unknown. We examined the association between readiness to change family-level nutrition and physical activity (PA) behaviors that predict child obesity and family FI status within a sample of rural families to better understand these relationships. Families (n = 144) were recruited from six rural Oregon communities in 2013. Families completed a FI screener and the Family Stage of Change Survey (FSOC), a measure of readiness to change family-level nutrition and PA behaviors associated with obesity. Demographic differences by FI status were explored, and regression was applied to examine relationships between FI and FSOC scores, adjusting for relevant covariates. Among FI families (40.2%), more were non-white (77.8% vs. 22.2%; p = 0.036) and had lower adult education (30.4% vs. 11.8% with > high school degree; p = 0.015) compared to non-FI families. After adjusting for education, race, ethnicity, and eligibility for federal meal programs, readiness to provide opportunities for PA was lower among FI families (p = 0.002). These data highlight a need to further investigate how food insecurity and low readiness to provide PA opportunities, i.e. "physical activity insecurity" may be contributing to the higher obesity rates observed among rural children and families.

Alternate JournalPrev Med Rep
PubMed ID28840095
PubMed Central IDPMC5560121