: Home cooking is an important obesity prevention strategy and associated with benefits for diet and health. Although cooking may be a joyful act of mindfulness, it also requires planning, preparation and time. Historically, women have been more likely to fulfill the role of food shopping and cooking. More recent studies suggested a transition in traditional household role assignments towards a larger involvement of males. This study examined the current sex distribution of cooking and food shopping responsibilities in the United States of America based on a nationally representative sample of 9078 citizens from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Surveys (2017-2020). More than 80% of women aged 25 years or older indicated that they were the person who did most of the planning/preparing of meals in their families, whereas the percentage of males responding affirmatively was substantially lower, ranging from 38.73% to 43.20% depending on age. Analyses on food shopping duties revealed a comparable distribution. In multivariate regression, female sex was associated with significantly higher odds of being the main food shopper/meal preparer in the family (OR: 4.82 (4.14-5.60) and 5.54 (4.60-6.67), respectively). Our data suggest that the majority of food shopping and cooking duties are still performed by women, which has important implications for public health nutrition initiatives.
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