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133rd Annual Meeting & Exposition
December 10-14, 2005
Elicia E. Williams-King, MD, Medicine, Cambridge Health Alliance, 1493 Cambridge Street, Cambridge, MA 02139, 617-547-3241, email@example.com
Introduction: In this country, obesity is at epidemic proportions. The food industry contributes to the problem by supplying high calorie foods in larger portions. My hypothesis is that predominantly minority and low income populations have a greater exposure to fast food restaurants and a lack of exposure to parks in Cambridge, Massachusetts. These populations may have a greater risk of obesity and other related diseases such as diabetes due to health and environmental disparities.
Methods: A search online generated 11 restaurants in Cambridge, Massachusetts, that were fast food restaurants and noted to be a fast food chain. An online search of “Parks Cambridge Massachusetts” produced a link to parks at the City of Cambridge website with 70 parks with playgrounds and/or fields. These restaurants and parks were geocoded at www.ffiec.gov for percent median family income, percent minority and percent of families below the poverty line.
Results: For fast food restaurants, the average of percent median family income is 82; the average of percent of families below the poverty line is 15; the average of percent of minorities is 37. For parks, the average of percent median family income is 84; the average of percent of families below the poverty line is 13; the average of percent of minorities is 36.
Conclusion: Compared to parks, fast food restaurants on average are located in slightly poorer locations with a slightly higher percentage of minorities. We must pay attention to the geography of our communities and remove health disparities to reduce the risk of obesity and other related diseases in minority and low income populations.
Presenting author's disclosure statement:
I wish to disclose that I have NO financial interests or other relationship with the manufactures of commercial products, suppliers of commercial services or commercial supporters.
The 133rd Annual Meeting & Exposition (December 10-14, 2005) of APHA