Master of Science (MS)


Human Ecology

Document Type



Diets are typically poorer and risk of chronic disease is greatest in low-income populations. A relationship has been established in the literature between food costs and diet quality, where lower cost diets are generally those of the poorest quality. Food group intake, energy/nutrient intake, and diet cost were assessed in 64 female food stamp recipients in Southeast Louisiana. From one 24-hour dietary recall collected at the beginning of the monthly resource cycle (Day 1) and one at the end (Day 2), nutrient intakes and diet costs were able to be analyzed between different time frames. Participants were divided among food security status (food secure [FS] or food insecure [FIS]), weight status (obese or non-obese), and fast food consumption (consumed or did not consume fast food [FF]) groups for all analyses. Diet costs were shown to be significantly different between the days for several groups (whole sample, obese, no FF consumption). It was for these groups that a greater number of nutrient differences were detected between the days. Similarly, a greater number of nutrient differences were detected among groups which had significantly different diet costs. One component of a healthy diet, as defined by the 2005 Dietary Guidelines for Americans (DGA), is a diet which emphasizes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and fat-free or low-fat milk and milk products. From the results of food group intake analyses, we found that participants were least likely to meet recommendations for whole grains and milk, followed by fruit and vegetables. Low intakes of these groups, in combination with high intakes of refined grains and low-quality meats, as seen among participants, place them at high risk for vitamin/mineral deficiencies. Mean intakes of vitamins/minerals in all groups failed to meet the established Dietary Reference Intakes (DRIs) for fiber; vitamins A and C; folate; potassium; calcium; and iron.



Document Availability at the Time of Submission

Release the entire work immediately for access worldwide.

Committee Chair

Carol E. O'Neil



Included in

Human Ecology Commons