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Neighborhood environments: disparities in access to healthy foods in the U.S.

Publication ,  Journal Article
Larson, NI; Story, MT; Nelson, MC
Published in: Am J Prev Med
January 2009

BACKGROUND: Poor dietary patterns and obesity, established risk factors for chronic disease, have been linked to neighborhood deprivation, neighborhood minority composition, and low area population density. Neighborhood differences in access to food may have an important influence on these relationships and health disparities in the U.S. This article reviews research relating to the presence, nature, and implications of neighborhood differences in access to food. METHODS: A snowball strategy was used to identify relevant research studies (n=54) completed in the U.S. and published between 1985 and April 2008. RESULTS: Research suggests that neighborhood residents who have better access to supermarkets and limited access to convenience stores tend to have healthier diets and lower levels of obesity. Results from studies examining the accessibility of restaurants are less consistent, but there is some evidence to suggest that residents with limited access to fast-food restaurants have healthier diets and lower levels of obesity. National and local studies across the U.S. suggest that residents of low-income, minority, and rural neighborhoods are most often affected by poor access to supermarkets and healthful food. In contrast, the availability of fast-food restaurants and energy-dense foods has been found to be greater in lower-income and minority neighborhoods. CONCLUSIONS: Neighborhood disparities in access to food are of great concern because of their potential to influence dietary intake and obesity. Additional research is needed to address various limitations of current studies, identify effective policy actions, and evaluate intervention strategies designed to promote more equitable access to healthy foods.

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Published In

Am J Prev Med

DOI

EISSN

1873-2607

Publication Date

January 2009

Volume

36

Issue

1

Start / End Page

74 / 81

Location

Netherlands

Related Subject Headings

  • United States
  • Risk Factors
  • Residence Characteristics
  • Public Health
  • Poverty Areas
  • Obesity
  • Marketing
  • Humans
  • Health Status Disparities
  • Food Supply
 

Citation

APA
Chicago
ICMJE
MLA
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Larson, N. I., Story, M. T., & Nelson, M. C. (2009). Neighborhood environments: disparities in access to healthy foods in the U.S. Am J Prev Med, 36(1), 74–81. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.amepre.2008.09.025
Larson, Nicole I., Mary T. Story, and Melissa C. Nelson. “Neighborhood environments: disparities in access to healthy foods in the U.S.Am J Prev Med 36, no. 1 (January 2009): 74–81. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.amepre.2008.09.025.
Larson NI, Story MT, Nelson MC. Neighborhood environments: disparities in access to healthy foods in the U.S. Am J Prev Med. 2009 Jan;36(1):74–81.
Larson, Nicole I., et al. “Neighborhood environments: disparities in access to healthy foods in the U.S.Am J Prev Med, vol. 36, no. 1, Jan. 2009, pp. 74–81. Pubmed, doi:10.1016/j.amepre.2008.09.025.
Larson NI, Story MT, Nelson MC. Neighborhood environments: disparities in access to healthy foods in the U.S. Am J Prev Med. 2009 Jan;36(1):74–81.
Journal cover image

Published In

Am J Prev Med

DOI

EISSN

1873-2607

Publication Date

January 2009

Volume

36

Issue

1

Start / End Page

74 / 81

Location

Netherlands

Related Subject Headings

  • United States
  • Risk Factors
  • Residence Characteristics
  • Public Health
  • Poverty Areas
  • Obesity
  • Marketing
  • Humans
  • Health Status Disparities
  • Food Supply