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Food Insecurity Tied to Poor MetS Markers in Hispanic/Latino Youth

Unfavorable metabolic syndrome-relevant cardiometabolic markers associated with lower household, child food security

WEDNESDAY, March 16, 2022 (HealthDay News) — For Hispanic/Latino youth, lower food security (FS) is associated with unfavorable metabolic syndrome-relevant cardiometabolic markers, according to a study published online March 16 in Pediatrics.

Luis E. Maldonado, Ph.D., from the University of North Carolina in Chapel Hill, and colleagues conducted a cross-sectional study involving 1,325 Hispanic/Latino youth aged 8 to 16 years to examine whether lower household and child FS were adversely associated with a metabolic syndrome composite variable and clinically measured cardiometabolic markers.

The researchers found that youth in the lowest FS category had significantly lower high-density lipoprotein cholesterol than those with high FS for both FS measures (household FS: −3.17; child FS: −1.81). Compared with high child FS, low/very low child FS was associated with greater fasting plasma glucose, triglycerides, and metabolic syndrome expected log counts (β = 1.37, 8.68, and 2.12, respectively).

“These findings argue for exploring interventions to address food insecurity among Hispanic/Latino youth, a fast-growing segment of the U.S. population at high risk of cardiometabolic complications,” the authors write. “Given the increase in food insecurity that resulted from the coronavirus disease 2019 pandemic, especially for Hispanic/ Latino immigrant families, these findings may also foreshadow concerning trends for the health and well-being of Hispanic/Latino youth.”

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