Food and nutrition security at risk in later life: evidence from the United Kingdom Expenditure & Food Survey

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    Securing adequate food and nutrition is essential for the maintenance of our health and function in society. This article examines the household characteristics associated with food and nutrition security in the United Kingdom population aged 60 years and over. Data are taken from the Expenditure and Food Survey, a continuous cross-sectional survey of household expenditure, food consumption and income. Survey data for 2002–05 provided a total sample of 5,600 households. Household food consumption is evaluated using national Dietary Reference Values recommended by the Department of Health. A multivariate logistic regression model examines the risk of being food and nutrition insecure by individual and household characteristics. The results suggest that certain sections of the older population are significantly more at risk of food insecurity than others: low-income households, the oldest-old, elderly from black and minority ethnic groups, those with a disability and men living alone. Influencing nutrition of elderly people in the home is complex and poses a major challenge to social policy. Coordinated activity at national and local levels will be required to help ensure that some of the most vulnerable members of society achieve healthy balanced diets.
    Original languageEnglish
    Pages (from-to)471-492
    Number of pages22
    JournalJournal of Social Policy
    Issue number3
    Publication statusPublished - Jul 2011


    • food insecurity
    • nutrition insecurity
    • elderly
    • United Kingdom
    • UK

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