|Food Insecurity Harmful to Children's Development
In 2009, 21.3 percent of American households with children experienced food insecurity, which means they had limited or uncertain access to adequate food at all times for an active, healthy life. In the current economic downturn, even more children may be at risk. Food insecurity is a public health problem with serious consequences for children, including greater likelihood of depression, anxiety, poor academic performance, birth defects, and behavior problems.
This brief—issued during Hunger Action Month—summarizes a longer Social Policy Report by Barbara H. Fiese, Professor of Human and Community Development, Family Resiliency Center, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Craig Gundersen, Professor of Agricultural and Consumer Economics, Department of Agricultural and Consumer Economics and Director, National Soybean Research Laboratory, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; Brenda Koester, Assistant Director, Family Resiliency Center, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign; and LaTesha Washington, Graduate Research Assistant, Department of Human and Community Development, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.