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Cliff Despres

Cliff Despres, who has more than a decade of experience in journalism and public relations, is communications director for Salud America! and its home base, the Institute for Health Promotion Research at UT Health San Antonio.


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Articles by Cliff Despres

Tell FDA: Save Menu Labeling (Again)!


family looking at menu at restaurant outdoors

You helped save menu labeling—for now! Supporters of Salud America!, our national Latino child health promotion program at UT Health San Antonio, submitted 10% of the 1,126 comments the FDA received about their one-year delay for restaurants to add menu labeling. FDA is listening to your comments! FDA wants more feedback on their delay of menu labeling—this week they extended the public comment deadline from July 3 to Aug. 2, 2017. Here’s how to submit a public comment right now: 1. Copy the model comment below. This comment was adapted from the Center for Science in the Public Interest by Salud America!. For the health of Latino and all families, I strongly support immediate implementation of menu labeling in chain restaurants, supermarkets, convenience stores, ...

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Sad Irony: Farmworkers Less Likely to Use Food Benefits


Latino farm boy in poverty and food insecurity

Farmworkers labor and toil long hours to put food on people's tables. But, in a cruel twist, many aren't accessing the food benefits they need—and are eligible for—to feed their own families, according to a new study. In fact, farmworkers who were Latino immigrants or even Latino citizens were 30% less likely to participate in the federal Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), compared to non-Latino white citizen farmworkers with the same need and eligibility, according to research led by UC Davis health economists. SNAP, formerly known as food stamps, aims to reduce hunger and stimulate spending. "The study undercuts the common assumption that immigrant crop workers, especially Hispanic crop workers, utilize SNAP more than others," according to a press release. ...

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Study: Young Latinos, Not Immigrants, Face Most Discrimination



Young Latino men born in the U.S. reported experiencing high levels of discrimination, according to a new study. Penn State researchers examined reported discrimination among 1,275 Latinos and 500 whites in Los Angeles County. They found the highest reporters of discrimination in both interpersonal and institutional contexts were young, U.S.-born Latino men, according to a news release. Surprisingly, both undocumented and documented Latino immigrants and older U.S.-born Latinos reported lower levels of discrimination. 'What ends up happening to young, U.S.-born Latinos is that they have higher expectations for inclusion than other Latino groups and greater awareness of unfair treatment and blocked opportunities," said Nancy Landale, professor of sociology and demography at ...

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How a Short Task in Middle School Puts Latinos on a Path to College


latino school boy desk class student

A simple assignment has the power to sharply increase Latino middle-schoolers' chances of getting to college, researchers have found. The assignment? Write essays about your core values and why they are important to you. For the past few years, Stanford University-led researchers followed 81 Latino, 158 black, and control students in middle schools who wrote these types of essays—which can provide "self-affirmation," reinforce adequacy, and add resilience, John Timmer reports in Ars Tecnica. Researchers then compared these essay writers to other students who wrote on neutral topics, like their afternoon routine. For Latinos, the self-affirmation essay writers cut their risk in half of ending up on the remedial track, and they were more than twice as likely to end up ...

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6 Easy Ways Latino Families Can Get Healthier Mouths


dental health brushing teeth

Salud America! Guest Blogger Jefferson Dental Care Let's "face" it—the mouth is a good place to start helping your family develop healthy oral and general health habits. The mouth is not disconnected from our body. It affects us physically and psychologically. It shapes how we look, speak, chew, taste food and enjoy life. Studies have shown that poor oral health is linked to major health issues like cardiovascular disease, respiratory infections and diabetic complications. This is especially true for Latinos. 6 Big Tips for Better Oral Health To reduce the effects of poor oral health on your general health, there are several easy steps that you and your family can do proactively today. These quick habits adopted as a family, can improve well-being, as well as ...

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#SaludTues Tweetchat 6/27/17: How to Protect Yourself from Health Fraud


health fraud latina woman with glasses wary questioning

When it comes to health, what is real and what is fake? Sometimes it's hard to tell. Health fraud scams refer to products that claim to prevent, treat, or cure diseases, but are not proven safe and effective for those uses. These scams waste money and can lead to delays in getting proper diagnosis and treatment. They can also cause serious or even fatal injuries. Let’s use #SaludTues on Tuesday, June 27, 2017, to tweet in English and Spanish about the latest strategies to help Latinos and all people avoid health scams and get access to truly beneficial health care! WHAT: #SaludTues Bilingual Tweetchat: “How to Protect Yourself from Health Fraud” TIME/DATE: 1-2 p.m. ET (12-1 p.m. CT), Tuesday, June 27, 2017 WHERE: On Twitter with hashtag #SaludTues HOST: ...

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Tell FDA: Support Menu Labeling to Help Latino Families!


el paso latino girl and mom looking at menu and menu labeling

UPDATE! The FDA has extended the deadline for public comments. Go here to comment by Aug. 2, 2017! The FDA recently delayed menu labeling in restaurants by a year, and may weaken how calories are labeled, according to the Center for Science in the Public Interest (CSPI). You have a limited time—until July 3, 2017—to oppose this year-long delay. Here's how to submit a public comment right now: 1. Copy the model comment below. This comment was adapted from CSPI by Salud America!, a national nonprofit at UT Health San Antonio that aims to promote a healthy weight for Latino children. For the health of Latino and all families, I strongly support immediate implementation of menu labeling in chain restaurants, supermarkets, convenience stores, movie theaters, and other food ...

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Awards for Our Ongoing Push for Latino Health Solutions!


quitxt selfie group shot smoking tobacco

We feel a special motivation to communicate on this blog and on social media to spotlight the causes of unhealthy weight and disease among Latino families. That way, we can help pave way for culturally relevant solutions. We're excited to announce our efforts have won three Digital Health Awards from the Health Information Resource Center. The Center is a national clearinghouse for professionals who work in consumer health fields that recognizes the world's best digital health resources. Merit, Website, Salud America! advocacy website (now salud-america.org). Merit, Facebook, @SaludAmerica on Facebook Merit, Twitter, @SaludAmerica on Twitter Salud America! is led by Dr. Amelie G. Ramirez, director of the Institute for Health Promotion Research (IHPR) at UT Health San ...

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Salud America! and Univision Partner to Promote Healthy Changes for Families


latina mom grocery store kid lettuce fresh produce

We believe in grassroots changes that help families have healthy lives. That's why we at Salud America! at UT Health San Antonio are proud to partner with Univision for a campaign to promote healthy change in San Antonio. The campaign will periodically feature our heroes of change on Univision 41's afternoon news and mid-day digital broadcasts, Edicion Digital. These San Antonio heroes of change, who we call Salud Heroes, are adding fruits and veggies to corner stores, creating community gardens, launching fitness programs in parks, and promoting water over sugary drinks. Our first Univision 41 segment in May 2017 featured the amazing Baby Cafe in San Antonio, which provides support and peer networking for Latina and all moms who breastfeed their babies. The hashtag ...

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