Friday, February 19, 2010

The First Lady Speaks Out on Obesity, Race, and Access to Healthy Foods

Our First Lady, Michelle Obama has made an example for us all as she has taken the initiative to speak out on the rising rates of obesity in this country and particularly in minority communities. She beckons us all to make the connections between obesity rates in minority and impoverished communities and access to fresh foods or the lack their of. The problem of lack of access to fresh and healthy foods is one of the major issues faced by poor and minority communities. Often, particularly in inner city neighborhoods-there are major gaps in food availability as there are no grocery stores or other venues that carry fresh produce. Often, in inner city neighborhoods, the only food stores are corner grocers that carry boxed, processed, and sugar-filled foods that are directly linked to the high rates of diabetes and obesity in these economically oppressed areas. I proofread a book on the subject a few years ago, The Cost of Being Poor: A Comparative Study of Life in Poor Urban Neighborhoods in Gary, Indiana by Dr. Sandra L. Barnes. In this book, she documents the direct links between diabetes, poor health, obesity, and the absence of grocers that carry fresh produce in poor, urban neighborhoods. This issue is a problem of access,a question of social and economic justice. Kudos to the first lady for raising awareness of this issue. We should all rise to the cause and help the First Lady in her effort to battle obesity and poor health in this country.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

If Mrs. Obomba wants to fight obesity and poor health, she needs to fight the man she is married to and demand living wages and Medicare/Medicaid for all, not the corporation bail outs of the wealthiest people. Obesity is directly related to high carbohydrate low protein diets. Donated white breads and donuts is what the poor get donated to them. Very little high protein foods or fresh fruits and veggies are donated. The Pentagon gets all the money it needs, the war profiteers and banker crooks her spouse gives trillions to while good health for the poor would cost half as much as Obomba wants to give to the corrupt insurance companies. HR 676 Medicaid and Medicare for all who want to apply.
Larry Carter Center 843-926-1750