Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Departmental Honors


Nutrition, Dietetics, and Food Sciences


Studies have shown that about twelve percent (13.5 million) of American households experience at least some form of food insecurity in one year. Causes for food insecurity include disability, low income if employed, unemployment within the past six months, and retirement. Hunger and obesity are often seen in the same person at the same time, including children. The effects of hunger and food insecurity seen among children include: anemia, higher levels of anxiety, poorer performance on mathematical tests, depression, aggression, tardiness, a poorer sense of well-being, lower physical abilities, and lower psychosocial abilities. Food insecurity also affects the elderly population. Food insecurity among the elderly often pertains to the inability or lack of resources to purchase the right food for health, or lack of ability or resources to obtain food. There are multiple programs in place to help alleviate hunger and food insecurity in America. These include the Food Stamp Program, the Special Supplementation Nutrition Program for Women, Infants, and Children (WIC), and the National School Lunch Program. Other non-governmental programs are emergency food assistance programs, such as soup kitchens and food pantries, farmers' markets, and religious-affiliated organizations. Dietetics professionals are in a unique position to help prevent and eradicate hunger and food insecurity in America.



Faculty Mentor

Tamara S. Vitale

Departmental Honors Advisor

Janet B. Anderson