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Alleviating Urban Food Deserts: Lessons From the Literature

Nikhanj, Soma D (2010) Alleviating Urban Food Deserts: Lessons From the Literature. Master's Thesis, University of Pittsburgh. (Unpublished)

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The goals of Healthy People 2010 are to increase the quality and years of healthy life and eliminate health disparities. Great health disparities occur in the area of nutrition, which is one of the objectives addressed in Healthy People 2010. It is well accepted that a healthy diet, including recommended amounts of fruits, vegetables, and whole grains, provides primary prevention against many chronic diseases, including obesity, diabetes, and certain cancers. Urban minority populations are the most likely to live in food deserts, which are areas with limited access to healthy foods. Research shows that the food environment plays a large role in the foods individuals have available to eat. Alleviating food desert conditions in urban areas has great public health importance because of the impact food environments have on the diet, and therefore health, of the people who reside in urban areas. Policy action can improve food retail access to fresh, healthy foods, decrease the price of these foods, and support the establishment of supermarkets and/or the improvement of existing small food retailers. Local policies that give tax breaks to supermarkets that locate in the center of food deserts might convince large food retailers to locate in these areas. Also, local policies that give grants to small food stores in urban food desert areas may persuade small food stores to offer more fresh produce. The United States could drastically reduce health disparities and make a giant leap towards achieving both of the Healthy People 2010 Goals of increasing years of healthy life and eliminating health disparities if urban food desert conditions were ameliorated


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Item Type: University of Pittsburgh ETD
Status: Unpublished
CreatorsEmailPitt UsernameORCID
Nikhanj, Soma
ETD Committee:
TitleMemberEmail AddressPitt UsernameORCID
Committee ChairDonohue, Juliejdonohue@pitt.eduJDONOHUE
Committee ChairTerry, Martha Annmaterry@pitt.eduMATERRY
Committee MemberSharma, Ravirks1946@pitt.eduRKS1946
Date: 28 June 2010
Date Type: Completion
Defense Date: 2 December 2009
Approval Date: 28 June 2010
Submission Date: 4 December 2009
Access Restriction: No restriction; Release the ETD for access worldwide immediately.
Institution: University of Pittsburgh
Schools and Programs: School of Public Health > Behavioral and Community Health Sciences
Degree: MPH - Master of Public Health
Thesis Type: Master's Thesis
Refereed: Yes
Uncontrolled Keywords: food access; food availability; food cost; Food deserts; food environment; food security; fruits and vegetables; healthy foods; urban
Other ID:, etd-12042009-142558
Date Deposited: 10 Nov 2011 20:08
Last Modified: 15 Nov 2016 13:53


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