Food Assistance Use Among Food Bank Clients Affected by Type 2 Diabetes

Eliza Short, Jayati Sharma, Debbe I. Thompson, Douglas Taren, Rhonda Gonzalez, Melanie D Hingle

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

1 Scopus citations


Objective: To understand the perspectives of food bank clients affected by type 2 diabetes (T2DM). Design: Semi-structured in-depth interviews conducted with food bank clients. Setting: Arizona regional food bank. Participants: Twenty English- and Spanish-speaking food bank clients with T2DM or living with a person with T2DM, aged 45–83 years, majority female, Hispanic, and food insecure. Phenomenon of Interest: Food bank use and preferences, and how these related to T2DM management. Analysis: A hybrid thematic analysis combining inductive and deductive reasoning. Results: Three organizing themes emerged from the analysis. First, food assistance was influenced by food preferences and the ability to pair with existing household foods. Second, desired support included fresh fruits and vegetables, meat, oats, oil, and herbs; recipes; cooking demonstrations; and social support. Third, factors influencing T2DM management were lack of financial resources, low motivation, insufficient nutrition knowledge, low medication adherence, and multiple comorbidities. Participants also expressed resilience and interest in improving T2DM management. Conclusions and Implications: Among a predominantly Hispanic food bank sample, produce and protein-rich foods, nutrition and culinary education, and social support were components of a supportive food bank experience and should be considered when designing food-based interventions for T2DM management for food insecure persons.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)288-298
Number of pages11
JournalJournal of Nutrition Education and Behavior
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2022


  • Hispanic
  • food assistance
  • food insecurity
  • qualitative research
  • type 2 diabetes

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Nutrition and Dietetics


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