Many Iraq-Afghanistan war vets struggle to find enough food: study

May 8, 2014
Many iraq-afghanistan war vets struggle to find enough food: study
25 percent face food insecurity, which triggers other woes, Minnesota researchers find.

(HealthDay)—One-quarter of U.S. veterans of the Iraq and Afghanistan wars have trouble getting enough access to enough food, according to new research.

The researchers, from the University of Minnesota and the Minneapolis Department of Veterans Affairs, surveyed 922 veterans who served in Iraq or Afghanistan since October 2001 and had made at least one outpatient visit to the Minneapolis VA Health Care System.

"We found that 27 percent of veterans who served in the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan don't have consistent access to sufficient food," study leader Rachel Widome from the University of Minnesota, said in a university news release.

"That's drastically higher than the prevalence of in the U.S., which is 14.5 percent," she noted.

The study found that the veterans most likely to have trouble getting enough to eat are: young; have a low income; live with children; are not married/partnered; are not employed/on active duty; have poor general health; and had a lower final military pay grade.

In addition, food-insecure veterans are also more likely to binge drink frequently, use tobacco and get less sleep than those who have enough food, according to the study published May 7 in the journal Public Health Nutrition.

"It is unacceptable that so many men and women who fought for our country struggle to afford food now that they are back home," Widome said. "We hope this research prompts discussion on how to help currently struggling to access food."

Explore further: Veterans with traumatic brain injuries and combat-related challenges

More information: The U.S. National Library of Medicine has more about veterans and military health.

Related Stories

Veterans with traumatic brain injuries and combat-related challenges

February 3, 2014
Virginia Commonwealth University researchers have found that among traumatic brain injury-diagnosed veterans treated by the Veterans Health Administration between 2009 and 2011, the majority had a clinician-diagnosed mental ...

US reports spike in suicides among youngest vets

January 10, 2014
There has been a sharp increase in the suicide rate among the youngest U.S. male veterans, and a smaller but still significant jump among women who served in the military, the Department of Veterans Affairs said Thursday.

Recent veterans in college engage in riskier health behaviors

October 31, 2011
College students who have served in the U.S. conflicts in Iraq and Afghanistan are more likely than their non-veteran peers to use tobacco, drink in excess and engage in other behaviors that endanger their health and safety, ...

Prevalence, risks for sexual dysfunction vary by veteran age

October 26, 2012
(HealthDay)—For Iraq/Afghanistan veterans, the prevalence and risk factors for sexual dysfunction (SD) vary with age, according to a study published online Oct. 22 in The Journal of Sexual Medicine.

Agreement boosts access for American Indian vets

December 6, 2012
(AP)—Native American military veterans will be able to access health care closer to home thanks to an agreement between the U.S. Department of Veteran Affairs and the Indian Health Service.

Veterans who mismanage money four times more likely to become homeless

October 22, 2013
Military veterans who report having common financial problems, such as bouncing a check or going over their credit limit, are four times more likely to become homeless in the next year than veterans without such problems.

Recommended for you

Americans are getting more sleep

January 19, 2018
Although more than one in three Americans still don't get enough sleep, a new analysis shows first signs of success in the fight for more shut eye. According to data from 181,335 respondents aged 15 and older who participated ...

Wine is good for you—to a point

January 18, 2018
The Mediterranean diet has become synonymous with healthy eating, but there's one thing in it that stands out: It's cool to drink wine.

Sleep better, lose weight?

January 17, 2018
(HealthDay)—Sleeplessness could cost you when it's time to stand on your bathroom scale, a new British study suggests.

Who uses phone apps to track sleep habits? Mostly the healthy and wealthy in US

January 16, 2018
The profile of most Americans who use popular mobile phone apps that track sleep habits is that they are relatively affluent, claim to eat well, and say they are in good health, even if some of them tend to smoke.

Improvements in mortality rates are slowed by rise in obesity in the United States

January 15, 2018
With countless medical advances and efforts to curb smoking, one might expect that life expectancy in the United States would improve. Yet according to recent studies, there's been a reduction in the rate of improvement in ...

Can muesli help against arthritis?

January 15, 2018
It is well known that healthy eating increases a general sense of wellbeing. Researchers at Friedrich-Alexander-Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg (FAU) have now discovered that a fibre-rich diet can have a positive influence ...

0 comments

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.