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Dec 07, 2015

PROVIDENCE, R.I. [Brown University] -- When Congress passed the Older Americans Act in 1965 to support elderly people who were struggling -- often alone -- to continue to live at home, a major plank of the legislation provided for home delivery of meals to ensure their adequate nutrition. In the midst of the holiday season, a newly published study confirms another benefit of visitors regularly knocking on the doors of seniors in need: a significant reduction in their feelings of loneliness.

"This continues to build the body of evidence that home-delivered meals provide more than nutrition and food security," said study lead author Kali Thomas, assistant professor (research) of health services, policy and practice in the Brown University School of Public Health and a researcher at the Providence Veterans Affairs Medical Center.

The results appear online in the Journals of Gerontology: Series B.

This research project has been sponsored by Meals on Wheels America and has been made possible by a grant from AARP Foundation.