Do you know anyone who is food insecure? You might be surprised, because the signs of food insecurity aren’t always obvious.
What is food insecurity? Is it the same as hunger?
Hunger is a feeling you get when you haven’t eaten. It’s a physical feeling of discomfort, while food insecurity is an economic condition. When someone is food insecure, it means they don’t have the means to access enough nutritious food on a regular basis. In food-insecure households, people often have to make choices between getting only what they can afford – which is usually cheap and/or nutrient-deficient – or skipping meals. Living in an extended state of food insecurity can have negative impacts on physical, emotional, social and mental well-being.
Food insecurity is a major problem in Silicon Valley, and it’s only gotten worse since the pandemic hit. It can be hard to see because there is so much wealth in this area, but there are 450,000 people every month who rely on Second Harvest distributions to get free, nutritious groceries for themselves and their families.
Helping our community understand the complexities of the problem that so many of our neighbors face can help increase the understanding of how hard it is to live in a very high cost of living area on low wages, and hopefully increase the empathy we have for the people who are working hard every day to provide for their families.
Below are five common myths about food insecurity.