Hunger: It is more than just being hungry

Hunger: It is more than just being hungry

What's In This? After writing about doughnuts, I thought it would be interesting to write about hunger in the U.S.

Most of us don’t have to worry about food and even when we say, “there’s nothing to eat”, we really mean, “there is food in the pantry, but we don’t want to eat what is in there”.

Mama’s fast hunger facts:

  1. In 2007, 36.2 million Americans (up from 35.5 million in 2006), including 12.4 million children, are food insecure, or didn’t have the money or assistance to get enough food to maintain active, healthy lives.
  2. Almost a third of those, 11.9 million adults and children, went hungry at some point. That’s 691,000 children who went hungry in 2007, up from 430,000 in 2006. Of those 35.5 million, 22.9 million were adults and 12. 6 million were children.
  3. In 2008 alone, a rise of about 6% in the price of groceries has led the poor to adopt a variety of survival strategies, from buying food that is beyond its expiration date to visiting food banks.
  4. About 25 million people in America receive food stamps — coupons that can be used only for food. The computerized system reveals that most benefits are used up by the third week of the month, leaving many families to scramble for other sources of food.
  5. America’s Second Harvest, the nation’s major food bank network, annually provides food to over 23 million people. That is more than the population of the state of Texas.
  6. The USDA recently found that about 96 billion pounds of food available for human consumption in the United States were thrown away by retailers, restaurants and farmers. Fresh fruits and vegetables, fluid milk, grain products, and sweeteners accounted for 2/3 of these losses.
  7. Hungry adults miss more work and consume more health care than those who don’t go hungry.
  8. Kids who experience hunger are more likely to suffer from anxiety, depression, behavior problems, and other illness.
  9. The total cost of hunger to American society is said to be about $90 billion a year.
  10. In contrast, it would only cost about $10 billion to $12 billion a year to virtually end hunger in our nation.
  11. From 1999 to 2007, the number of people in poverty has increased from 32.3 million to 36.5 million.

* Source

So now what? Let’s help each other. I’ve created a list of food bank programs for each state in the U.S. I am also going to donate some of the fruits and veggies from my garden to a local food bank and I’ll ask my neighbors to do the same.  Tell me how you can help solve our Hunger Problem.

– Mama


6 Responses to “Hunger: It is more than just being hungry”
  1. stephanie says:

    Hunger is an understated problem in our country. When you think of someone being hungry, you think of people that are living on the street, but there are places that even people on the street can go and get a hot meal. Hunger to me is when there’s no way or transportation you can take to get to where the food is. Hunger is not taking out the time to locate the food banks or shelters that provide food for the needy. Children are the ones that are most likely to go hungry because of the lack of knowledge and guidance.

  2. Millie says:

    When I was growing up in Tennessee, my dad used to plant a garden and raise pigs and chickens to help feed the family. When he died, my mama tried to keep me, my sister and my brothers fed but some days we went hungry. It was terrible, especially when it was cold and snowing. Sometimes all we had to eat was biscuits. It seemed like somebody in my house was always sick and I was scared, especially when mama got sick. We moved to Arkansas when I was in the 8th grade where mama got a job in a chicken factory. From then on I don’t remember being hungry but when I hear about people being hungry, it brings back real bad memories. I wish nobody had to go hungry.

  3. N. Bembridge says:

    I can relate to Millie’s hunger story. I grew up in West Virginia a few years ago and for a while there, I thought hunger was a way of life for a lot of people, not just my family. Sometimes neither my mom or dad could find work and we lived on public assistance which wasn’t very much. Some times were tougher than others and I remember going to school hungry. Looking back on those times, I wonder why we were hungry when there was so much food around. It is my opinion that no one in this world should ever go hungry when farmers are actually paid not to grow food.

  4. Full Name says:

    I have been hungry. It is embarrasing, hard to endure. People who don’t know or can’t understand judge you. My husband and I both lost our jobs. We didn’t qualify for assistance because our car was only 2 years old. What money we made at temp jobs went for our house payment with nothing left over. We had to make less than our house payment to qualify for food at a food bank, so we couldn’t get food there either unless we lied. We went without electricity and water 2 summers and borrowed water from neighbors, which I paid them when we finally got better. People don’t know responsible people can starve in America, but they can while people shake their heads at you as if you have squandered your money or done something wrong. I ate mulberries 3 days from a tree in my back yard which were full of bugs once.

  5. tamara s. says:

    There was a time when I had to stay with a friend because I had no where to live, I didn’t grow up with my mother or father and my family didn’t want anything to do with me. At the time I was only 16 and I didn’t have a job, my friend didn’t like cooking in the house because he didn’t like the smell of food on his clothes so while he went to work & ate there I was at the house unemployed and starving for 3 months. One time I went to look for a job and I walked about 10 blocks on an empty stomach and 85 degree weather that when I got on the subway(I live in NYC) I passed out and ended up in the hospital which I still owe money for because I don’t have health insurance. I’m 19 now & still on my own & thanking god I’m still alive, hope we can end this hunger era

  6. L. H says:

    And you see all these horribly overweight people who were overfed the wrong foods as children. They graze at buffet restaurants eating the worst choices. I stand behind people in the grocery line whose choices consist of soda, TV dinners, cookies, ground beef, and white bread; there are no fresh vegetables or fruits. Their health problems weigh down our national health system, such as it is, increase insurance rates, and take money from people who need not only health help but something as basic as food.