A report released today by the Meals on Wheels Association of America Foundation projects that the raw number of elderly Americans suffering from food insecurity will grow 75% by 2025.
According to U.S. Census statistics, there are currently more than 185,000 food-insecure Texans 65 years and older. Using this report's projections, the state is likely to face nearly 324,000 food insecure elderly by 2025.
Not surprisingly, the report finds that food insecurity among the elderly results in low vitamin intake and poor health outcomes. It also agrees with findings published last November by the South Texas Food Bank showing the primary causes of hunger to include low income, education levels and assets. "Controlling for other factors," today's report concludes, "seniors without emotional or financial support are substantially more likely to suffer from hunger."
In Tyler, the East Texas Food Bank is partnering with Meals on Wheels to serve the growing number of seniors there who have been hurt by rising food and fuel prices. According to KETK News, the program now has its first waiting list in 35 years, and has discovered recipients rationing food to get through the weekend.