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Salud Pública de México

Print version ISSN 0036-3634


MELGAR-QUINONEZ, Hugo et al. Food insecurity among Latinos in California: A focal groups study. Salud pública Méx [online]. 2003, vol.45, n.3, pp.198-205. ISSN 0036-3634.

OBJECTIVE: To assess the perception and experience with food insecurity among Latinos living in California, as well as their interpretation of the items included in the Food Security Scale. MATERIAL AND METHODS: A series of four focus groups were carried out among 30 adults of Latin-American descent living in California. The participant's responses were coded by two researchers to identify the main issues, and to compare them for assessing their convergence. RESULTS: The items were well understood and were not perceived as offensive. The conceptual framework was confirmed as a "managed process" with different severity levels. The causes of food insecurity were: unemployment, high cost of some food items, and lack of nutritional information. The demand for nutritional education was constant. CONCLUSION: Interpreting data on food insecurity in Latinos requires proper consideration of their particular perceptions.

Keywords : food insecurity; focus groups; hispanic-Americans; California.

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