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Table 3 Health and academic variables by food security status among first-year college students at risk of weight gain in the United States (n = 855), 2016

From: Prevalence and correlates of food insecurity among U.S. college students: a multi-institutional study

  All Students (n = 855) Food-Secure (n = 692 [81%]) Food-Insecure (n = 163 [19%]) P-valuea Insecure vs. Secure
Waist Circumference (cm), Mean ± SD 76.7 ± 5.9 79.1 ± 7.4 79.9 ± 13.2 0.471
BMI (kg/m2)
 Mean ± SD 24.70 ± 5.23 24.5 ± 5.0 25.2 ± 5.8 0.112
 Overweight/obese (BMI ≥ 25), n (%) 310 (37.1) 247 (36.5) 63 (39.9) 0.423
Perceived Stress
 Mean ± SD 27.0 ± 5.9 26.2 ± 5.8 30.2 ± 5.7 < 0.001
 High stressb, n (%) 457 (54.2) 342 (49.8) 114 (73.7)  
Sleep Quality
 Mean ± SD 5.8 ± 2.5 5.4 ± 2.4 6.8 ± 2.8 < 0.001
 Poor sleep qualityc, n (%) 542 (64.7) 416 (61.1) 126 (80.3) < 0.001
Disordered Eating
 Mean ± SD 7.49 ± 7.49 7.0 ± 6.9 9.5 ± 9.1 0.001
 Yesd, n (%) 62 (7.6) 43 (6.5) 19 (12.3) 0.011
GPA, n (%)     0.001
 3.50–4.00 423 (50.6) 361 (53.3) 62 (38.9)  
 3.00–3.49 246 (29.4) 195 (28.9) 51 (32.1)  
 2.50–2.99 124 (14.8) 91 (13.4) 33 (20.8)  
 < 2.50 43 (5.1) 30 (4.4) 13 (8.2)  
  1. aP-value < 0.05 is statistically significant
  2. bOn a scale of 0 to 56, with higher numbers indicating more stress. The score was dichotomized at 28, with scores ≥ 28 considered high stress [37, 38]
  3. cOn a scale of 0 to 21, with higher numbers indicating worse sleep quality. The score was dichotomized at 5, with scores ≥ 5 considered poor [35]
  4. dOn a scale of 0 to 78, with higher numbers indicating higher level of problematic eating behaviors and a high level of concern about dieting and body weight. The score was dichotomized at 20, with scores ≥ 20 indicating disordered eating [40, 41]