Proceedings of the Nutrition Society | VOL. 61

Food budget standards and dietary adequacy in low-income families

Publication Date Nov 1, 2002


Budget standards are specified baskets of goods and services which, when priced, can represent predefined living standards. ‘Low cost but acceptable’ (LCA) is a minimum income standard, adequate to provide warmth and shelter, a healthy and palatable diet, social necessities, social integration, avoidance of chronic stress and the maintenance of good health (physical, mental and social) in a context of free access to good-quality health care, good-quality education and social justice. The LCA food budget standard identifies a basket of foods and corresponding menus which provides (for a given household composition) a palatable diet that is consistent with prevailing cultural norms, and that satisfies existing criteria for health in relation to dietary reference values, food-based dietary guidelines and safe levels of alcohol consumption. Two previous studies that explored the relationship between diet and food expenditure in low-income households suggested that the amount spent on food was a good predictor of dietary adequacy, growth and health in children. The current paper will focus on diet and measures of deprivation in 250 low-income households in London. Households were screened for material deprivation (e.g. no car, no fixed line telephone, in receipt of Income Support) using a doorstep questionnaire. Diet was assessed using four 24 h recalls based on the ‘triple pass’ method. Expenditure on food and other aspects of household circumstances were assessed by face-to-face interview. Food expenditure in these households w...

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Food Expenditure In Households
Expenditure In Households
Growth In Children
Safe Levels Of Alcohol Consumption
Triple Pass
Measures Of Deprivation
Receipt Of Income Support
Food Expenditure
Palatable Diet
Dietary Adequacy

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