Tuesday, November 23, 2004

What Does Hunger Mean? A Thanksgiving Post

When you're "hungry," you grab a snack or a meal and and you're all set. Sometimes you'll be too busy and forget to eat, suddenly realizing some period of time later that you're "starving." Or perhaps you're trying to trim down a bit after holiday-season overindulgence and often feel a bit low on fuel...

Thinking this way means that, when a study of hunger comes out, it's hard to really grasp the meaning. After all, we've all been "hungry."

What is meant by Hunger?
The physiological phenomenon of hunger is defined as an uneasy or painful sensation caused by a lack of food. As measured and described in the U.S. food security measurement project, "hunger" is involuntary hunger that results from not being able to afford enough food. People are not counted as "hungry" for these statistics if they were hungry only because they were dieting to lose weight, fasting for religious reasons, or were just too busy to eat.

In 2003, 12,600,000 families in our country didn't have enough food to meet the needs of all their members because they had insufficient money or other resources.

That's approximately the population of Ohio and West Virginia combined.

As we overindulge in our Thanksgiving dinner ritual, we should keep in mind those less fortunate.

Sometime before the annual tryptophan rush settles you down into couch-potato-y bliss, consider what you could do with one dollar the next day. On Friday, put that one dollar aside. On Saturday, do the same. Keep it up until next Thanksgiving, then give that money to the local foodbank on Thanksgiving day.

If every household who can afford to put aside a single dollar a day did the same, food banks next year would be flooded with $367,000,000. At approximately 15 meals delivered per dollar donated, we would be able to deliver 5.5 billion meals. Now that would be something to be thankful for...

Here are some resources I found interesting while researching this post:
Share your Thanksgiving Blessings

The Hunger Site

USDA Hunger Resources Page


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