Poverty, food insecurity, and obesity: A conceptual framework for research, practice, and policy

Lila J.Finney Rutten, Amy L. Yaroch, Uriyoan Colón-Ramos, Wendy Johnson-Askew, Mary Story

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

20 Scopus citations


Alarming trends in obesity and food insecurity in the United States have raised public health concerns and efforts to understand and address these potentially related public health problems. Although much research has been done to discern whether food insecurity is causally related to the obesity epidemic, the evidence to date is mixed. To address a pressing need for greater conceptual clarity regarding these urgent public health problems, our article summarizes findings from research examining the association between obesity and food insecurity in the United States and describes a conceptual framework to characterize the factors that may fuel a cycle of mutual influence among obesity, food insecurity, and their shared mechanisms and health-related outcomes.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)403-415
Number of pages13
JournalJournal of Hunger and Environmental Nutrition
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2010



  • Food insecurity
  • Obesity
  • Poverty

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health(social science)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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