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Community Health Nursing (NURS 402 ) Nutrition Assignment

John Marsh
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402 nutrition assignment

California State University Fullerton

Community Health Nursing (NURS 402 )

Nutrition on a Budget
Description of the Family
Many families in the United States can afford to have what they need and even what they
want without having to worry where their next paycheck will come from. According to the US
Census though, in 2019, 12.3% of families in the United States lived in poverty and were likely
unable to afford the things they needed or wanted (U.S. Census Bureau, 2020). The largest race
or ethnicity living in or below the poverty line in Los Angeles in 2019 was Hispanic (Los
Angeles County, CA, 2020). Being that I am Hispanic myself, I have created a family that
identifies as Hispanic. This family of four includes a 36-year-old healthy and athletic Mexican-
American Father with a BMI of 25, a 34-year-old healthy and slender Mexican American Mother
with a BMI of 19, a 14 year-old healthy and pre-pubescent Mexican American son with a BMI of
22 and an 8 year-old healthy and energetic Mexican American daughter with a BMI of 21. All
are first generation Mexican immigrants, with U.S. citizenship, from the city of Guanajuato,
Mexico. They moved to Los Angeles, California 7 years ago but their primary culture is Mexican
and their primary language is Spanish, although all members of the family can speak fluent
English. The father works for a construction company, helping build various buildings in the
greater Los Angeles area and the mother works independently cleaning houses. While job
opportunities are more widely available in a city like Los Angeles, the cost of living is quite
high. After paying various bills and taxes, the family is left with 35 dollars per week to spend on
food. This situation is not uncommon as nearly 13 million kids in the U.S. face hunger (Callahan,
2020). Families like the one I have just described may find themselves working long hours and
difficult jobs only to find themselves foraging for money to pay for things like food and
extracurricular activities.
The nutritional requirements for the average person consist of consuming protein,
vegetables, grains and dairy with limited intake of added sugar and saturated fats (“Nutrition for
kids”, 2020). This nourishment should be obtained through eating nutrient-dense, whole foods
and little to no packaged foods (“Nutrition for kids”, 2020). According to the Office of Disease
Prevention and Health Promotion (ODPHP), the father should be consuming about 2,400-2,600
calories per day since he is quite active at job, the mother should be consuming about 2,000-
2,200 calories per day with her active job, the son should be consuming 2,200-2,400 calories per
day since he is active playing after school sports and the daughter should be consuming 1,600-
1,800 calories per day since she actively walks everywhere she goes (“Estimated calorie needs
per day”, 2020).
While the members of this family are fortunate enough to not have any serious health issues
that affect their diet, they do have a number of barriers to accessing and preparing nutritious
foods at home. The first barrier, lack of childcare, prevents the parents from always being able to
have healthy, cooked meals for the children. Because both parents work long hours, they are not
always home in time to cook a nutritious dinner and often have to pick up fast food or the
children are left to cook something simple and often unhealthy for themselves. Additionally, the
zip code they live in has over 10 fast food restaurants and only one grocery store. One article
describes this overabundance of fast food and lack of healthier foods in urban areas as “food
oppression” and notes that this phenomenon has increased African American and Latino folks
vulnerability to food-related death and disease (Freeman, 2007). It is important to note that the
family does not have a car and the grocery store is not within walking distance. They use public
transportation to travel. Communities in urban areas like Los Angeles have few transportation
options to reach supermarkets, which can be a challenge for acquiring healthy foods




Community Health Nursing (NURS 402 ) Nutrition Assignment

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