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Food insecurity is a lack of access by all people at all times to enough food for an active, healthy life, according to the United States Department of Agriculture.
Minn. is just one of many states across the country impacted by food insecurity, with over ten percent of the state dealing with a lack of healthy foods that is costing $1.6 billion in healthcare and education costs to alleviate hunger in the state.
According to a recent article, this lack of food is highly correlated, especially in areas of poverty, to chronic disease.
Working to alleviate health and hunger concerns simultaneously, Boston Consulting Group helped bring together Second Harvest Heartland (SHH), a food bank in Minn. and Hennepin County Medical Center(HCMC), to connect food insecure patients to healthy food access.
The Food Shelf offers patients at the HCMC food from the SHH, working together to help alleviate hunger and prevent future chronic disease.
One of the slogan’s of The Food Shelf at HCMC is that “Food is Medicine”, and this belief is proven through the 28 hospital-based clinics and seven community clinics that serve families with health care check up’s, connections to food assistance programs, diet education, and a bag of nutritious food.
Latino’s often face food insecurity, having programs that address not only food insecurity but also help prevent health issues may offer more Latino families a more sustainable solution to preventing hunger and chronic disease.
To learn more about how food impacts Latino children’s health, click here.