WIC Participation and Attenuation of Stress-Related Child Health Risks of Household Food Insecurity and Caregiver Depressive Symptoms

This article examined how family stressors relate to child health and how participation in the Special Supplemental Nutrition Program for Women, Infants and Children (WIC), attenuated health risks. In a sample of 26,950 WIC eligible caregivers with young children, the authors found that as stressors increased the odds of child fair/poor health, hospitalizations and developmental risk increased. The children of WIC participants were significantly less likely to experience these health conditions. The authors conclude that as stressors increase, child health risks increase. WIC participation attenuated but did not eliminate these health risks.