“You are where you live”

It certainly makes sense that being well off gives you more access to healthy foods (that are typically more pricey) and more health quirks. It turns out that the neighborhood you live in actually influences weight gain and loss – a 2010 study reported that BMI (body mass index) tends to increase in lower-income neighborhoods. A recent Reuters article reports the results of a study which ties better neighborhoods to less diabetes.

Moving to neighborhoods with less poverty could provide easier access to health care and supermarkets with healthy food, relieve everyday stress that can affect eating habits, and make it easier to find a safe place to exercise

“Given that diabetes and obesity are associated with a large number of health complications and higher cost for medical care, the findings from this study suggest that improving the environments of low-income urban neighborhoods might improve the duration and quality of life for the residents and lower health care expenditures”

I featured an NY Times article a while back on malnutrition in inner city neighborhoods, despite an overabundance of calories. These linkages are extremely disheartening.

I would suggest eating lower cost but healthy foods like sweet potatoes and beans if you don’t have immediate access to healthy foods that are more pricey.

Dr John Ellis MD

Board-certified anesthesiologist, with expertise in cardiovascular anesthesia and the implications of obesity and sleep apnea in anesthesia. See vascularanesthesia.com for professional information. Dr. Ellis has used the strategies in here to: (1) lose 120 lbs over 18 months, (2) stop all antihypertensive medicines, and (3) no longer need CPAP treatment for sleep apnea.

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