FOOD INSECURITY AND HIV/AIDS CLOSELY LINKED
February 18th, 2015
In a Quebec study* based on a sample of 319 people living with HIV, 58% of respondents reported living with food insecurity. That’s seven times higher than the provincial rate.
Whether it’s due to financial difficulty, physical limitations, or exclusion resulting from stigmatization, households affected by HIV can have a hard time maintaining a healthy, balanced diet (due to access to food, quality and diversity of food, etc.).
Food security on its own affects both physical and mental health, and can have a negative impact on quality of life. In addition, according to some data, by aggravating situations of vulnerability and inequality, a lack of food security can play a role in increasing the risk of HIV transmission, limit access to treatment and care, and is also associated with negative health outcomes for individuals on antiretroviral therapy.
While the negative relationship between food insecurity and HIV is easy to spot, it remains difficult to say whether food insecurity is a cause or effect of HIV.
* “Impact of Food Security on Health Outcomes in People Living with HIV/AIDS Across Canada” Community research carried out in 2013 in British Columbia, Ontario, and Quebec
Source (French only): jesuisseropo.org