Food Insecurity Among American Indians and Alaska Natives: A National Profile Using the Current Population Survey–Food Security Supplement

Valarie Blue Bird Jernigan, Kimberly R. Huyser, Jimmy Valdes, Vanessa Watts Simonds

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Food insecurity increases the risk for obesity, diabetes, hypertension, and cancer—conditions highly prevalent among American Indians and Alaska Natives (AI/ANs). Using the Current Population Survey Food Security Supplement, we analyzed the food insecurity trends of AI/ANs compared to other racial and ethnic groups in the United States from 2000 to 2010. From 2000 to 2010, 25% of AI/ANs remained consistently food insecure and AI/ANs were twice as likely to be food insecure compared to whites. Urban AI/ANs were more likely to experience food insecurity than rural AI/ANs. Our findings highlight the need for national and tribal policies that expand food assistance programs; promote and support increased access to healthy foods and community food security, in both rural and urban areas; and reduce the burden of diet-related disparities on low-income and racial/ethnic minority populations.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-10
Number of pages10
JournalJournal of Hunger and Environmental Nutrition
Issue number1
StatePublished - 2 Jan 2017



  • Alaska native
  • American Indian
  • current population survey
  • food environments
  • food security
  • obesity

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