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SNAP Participants’ Eating Patterns over the Benefit Month: A Time Use Perspective

Karen Hamrick () and Margaret Andrews ()

PLOS ONE, 2016, vol. 11, issue 7, 1-18

Abstract: Individuals receiving monthly benefits through the U.S. Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) often fall short of food at the end of the month and some report feelings of hunger. To investigate this situation, we used time diaries from the 2006–08 American Time Use Survey and Eating & Health Module to identify the timing of days where respondents reported no eating occurrences. Analysis includes descriptive statistics, a logit model, and a simulated benefit month. We found that SNAP participants were increasingly more likely than nonparticipants to report a day with no eating occurrences over the benefit issuance cycle. This supports the view that there is a monthly cycle in food consumption associated with the SNAP monthly benefit issuance policy.

Date: 2016
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DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0158422

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