Food deserts have been present in poor socioeconomic communities for quite some time, however organizations and public health officials have attempted to reduce the prevalence and assist.
"Food Deserts may contribute to social disparity in diet and diet related outcomes" (Beaulac, 2009) These communities have limited access to healthy affordable food, poverty rates are greater than 20%, and 1/3 population are greater than 1 mile from a major grocer. (Dutko, 2012) This results in the purchase and consumption of inexpensive, easily accessible, unhealthy foods. Eventually contributing to high blood pressure, high cholesterol, high blood sugar and increasing your risk of heart attacks, strokes, obesity, and type 2 diabetes.
Black communities are most affected by this public health problem. This population is disproportionately affected by comorbidities that are causally related to diet and lifestyle choices. Increasing the availability and access to better food options could improve health outcomes with improved nutrition intake and knowledge.
Solutions must include improving access. Grocers must increase their presence in these areas. In addition, organizations could provide other avenues for healthy selections. Mission 216 is non-profit organization that has created a community garden in 75216 a known food desert. Our mission is to provide access to reduce comorbidities that plague this community. Check out my other blog post on how we started our community garden or how to start your own.
-Tasha's Taste of Travel