Hunger carries $160B a year in healthcare costs

Food insecurity led to healthcare costs of $160 billion in the United States last year, according to a study commissioned by the charitable Bread for the World Institute. Food insecurity is associated with numerous healthcare problems and complications, including depression, high blood pressure, diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Policymakers could offset much of these problems by investing in federal nutrition programs such as school lunches and SNAP, according to the report. "The old adage that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure has never been more appropriate," Asma Lateef, director of the Institute, said in an announcement. "Investments in federal nutrition programs are critical and much more needs to be done to ensure that vulnerable and underserved communities have access to healthy foods." Study