From Cells to Community Part II: Race. Poverty, Health and Policy
Monday, November 2, 2015: 8:30 a.m. - 10:00 a.m.
Food can be defined as ‘any nutritious substance that people or animals eat or drink, or that plants absorb, in order to maintain life and growth’.
Hippocrates said, "Let your food be your medicine, and your medicine be your food." So while all of us have to eat, we rarely think about the policy implications of the foods we eat. And if food is essential to maintain life and growth, then what are the implications of food policy and legislation and their impact on the health/health status of our nation at the federal, state, and local levels.
African American food culture and consumption, from the first arrival of Africans in 1619 at the English colony of Jamestown to the second term of the first African American president in 2015 living now just 160 miles away from that colonial site, have been heavily influenced by historical and present events as well as health and income inequity, racism, education,
religion, and political debates. Food deserts, access to healthy and nutritious foods, food production, food safety protocols and inspections, and the impact of government shutdowns on the poor and hungry families are now a part of the everyday American experience. These factors collectively embody an experience that has had a profound effect on the health profile of the African American population from cradle to grave. This session will take an in-depth look at the health status of African Americans relative to their food consumption while exploring such issues as race, income, and community. Using the issue
of access to/consumption of healthy food as a lens, our discussion will start with the role that race may play with a close look at genetics/biology followed by a discussion of the growing income inequality between blacks and whites and ending with a discussion of the role which policy does and can play.
Session Objectives: Analyze the health status of African Americans relative to their
food consumption while exploring such issues as race, income, and community.
See individual abstracts for presenting author's disclosure statement and author's information.
Organized by: Black Caucus of Health Workers
Endorsed by: Law, Injury Control and Emergency Health Services, International Health, Asian & Pacific Islander Caucus for Public Health, Community Health Planning and Policy Development, APHA-Committee on Women's Rights, Caucus on Public Health and the Faith Community, Caucus on Refugee and Immigrant Health