SNAP-Ed (supplemental nutrition assistance program-education) increases long-term food security among Indiana households with children in a randomized controlled study


Rivera, R.L.; Maulding, M.K.; Abbott, A.R.; Craig, B.A.; Eicher-Miller, H.A.


Background: Food insecurity is negatively associated with US children's dietary intake and health. The Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program-Education (SNAP-Ed) aims to alleviate food insecurity by offering nutrition, budgeting, and healthy lifestyle education to low-income individuals and families. Objective: The objective of this study was to evaluate the long-term impact of the Indiana SNAP-Ed on food security among households with children. Methods: A randomized, controlled, parallel study design with SNAP-Ed as an intervention was carried out during a 4- to 10-wk intervention period. Intervention group participants received the first 4 Indiana SNAP-Ed curriculum lessons. Study participants (n = 575) were adults aged ≥18 y from low-income Indiana households with ≥1 child living in the household. Both treatment groups completed an assessment before and after the intervention period and 1 y after recruitment. The 18-item US Household Food Security Survey Module was used to classify the primary outcomes of food security for the household and adults and children in the household. A linear mixed model was used to compare intervention with control group effects over time on food security. Results: Mean ± SEM changes in household food security score and food security score among household adults from baseline to 1-y follow-up were 1.2 ± 0.4 and 0.9 ± 0.3 units lower, respectively, in the intervention group than in the control group (P < 0.01). The mean change in food security score from baseline to 1-y follow-up among household children was not significantly different in the intervention group compared with the control group. Conclusions: SNAP-Ed improved food security over a longitudinal time frame among low-income Indiana households with children in this study. SNAP-Ed may be a successful intervention to improve food security. © 2016 American Society for Nutrition.


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