NYMC Faculty Publications


Trends in 10-Year Predicted Risk of Cardiovascular Disease Associated With Food Insecurity, 2007-2016

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Faculty, Resident/Fellow

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INTRODUCTION: Consumption of a healthy diet improves cardiovascular (CV) risk factors and reduces the development of cardiovascular disease (CVD). Food insecure (FIS) adults often consume an unhealthy diet, which can promote obesity, type 2 diabetes mellitus (T2DM), hypertension (HTN), and hyperlipidemia (HLD). The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) is designed to combat food insecurity by increasing access to healthy foods. However, there is a paucity of data on the association of SNAP participation among FIS adults and these CVD risk factors. METHODS: The National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) is a publicly available, ongoing survey administered by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Center for Health Statistics. We analyzed five survey cycles (2007-2016) of adult participants who responded to the CVD risk profile questionnaire data. We estimated the burden of select CVD risk factors among the FIS population and the association with participation in SNAP. RESULTS: Among 10,449 adult participants of the survey, 3,485 (33.3%) identified themselves as FIS. Food insecurity was more common among those who were younger, female, Hispanic, and Black. Among the FIS, SNAP recipients, when compared to non-SNAP recipients, had a lower prevalence of HLD (36.3 vs. 40.1% = 0.02), whereas rates of T2DM, HTN, and obesity were similar. Over the 10-year survey period, FIS SNAP recipients demonstrated a reduction in the prevalence of HTN ( < 0.001) and HLD ( < 0.001) which was not evident among those not receiving SNAP. However, obesity decreased only among those not receiving SNAP. The prevalence of T2DM did not change over the study period in either group. CONCLUSION: Over a 10-year period, FIS adults who received SNAP demonstrated a reduction in the prevalence of HTN and HLD, which was not seen among those not receiving SNAP. However, the prevalence of obesity and T2DM did not decline among SNAP recipients, suggesting that additional approaches are required to impact these important CVD risk factors.