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5 Ways Our Current Food Systems Make Us Sick


5 Ways Our Current Food Systems Make Us Sick

Our food systems affect our health in good and bad ways. For example, some of the most severe health impacts of food systems trace back to some of the core industrial food and farming practices. These include chemical-intensive agriculture, intensive livestock production, and mass production and marketing of processed foods. That is why the International Panel of Experts on Sustainable Food Systems (IPES Food) published a new report to identify five ways our current food systems make us sick, seven challenges to understanding and addressing them, and five leverage points for building healthier food systems. Here are five ways our current food system makes us sick: 1. People Get Sick Because They Work in Unhealthy Conditions Pesticides are responsible for an estimated 200,000 ...

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Jaquelin Flores: Determined to Reduce Latino Health Inequities



Taking a cue from her energetic, hard-working, El Salvadoran mother, Jaquelin Flores is determined to reduce health inequities that grip the young Latino population. For instance, as she studies for her master’s degree at California State University, Long Beach, she also works as a clinical research coordinator. She leads research projects that focus on psychosocial factors and innovative clinical care models with adolescents and young adults with type 1 diabetes. Flores has a strong desire to shine a light on how different cultural backgrounds influence health behaviors and manifest in different health outcomes. To further her experience and education, Flores applied for the Éxito! Latino Cancer Research Leadership Training program. The Éxito! program, led by Dr. Amelie ...

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Hilmaris Centeno Girona: Brewing Up a Passion for Coffee (and Latino Health)



Coffee is life for Hilmaris Centeno Girona. For many families in Puerto Rico, coffee is a childhood staple, and Centeno Girona has been an avid java drinker since childhood. Now she’s brewing up a passion for solving cancer health disparities and improving health knowledge among Latinos. Currently, Centeno-Girona is a master’s degree student and a clinical research coordinator at the Comprehensive Cancer Center of the University of Puerto Rico. Her research interest includes health disparities, cancer research, and social and behavioral sciences, in areas like colorectal cancer screening and liver cancer prevention. To further her experience and education, Centeno Girona applied for the Éxito! Latino Cancer Research Leadership Training program. The Éxito! program, led ...

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Corina Zamora: Using Storytelling to Solve Problems, Boost Health



Corina Zamora grew up playing bingo and telling stories with her family in South Texas. Storytelling even helped in solving problems and learning Spanish, by using loteria cards to tell stories in this language. As the only Latina in a small Texas school, it was important to be able to talk about all experiences, good and bad. Zamora, currently a graduate student at the UTHealth School of Public Health campus in San Antonio, can tell many stories of how she is improving Latino health. After getting interested in public health began as an undergrad at UT Rio Grande Valley, Zamora worked with the USDA to study local agriculture and entomology. She was asked to present this research at the 72nd annual Subtropical Agriculture and Environments Society’s 72nd annual ...

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Alexis Smith: Bridging the Gap between Researchers and Latino Communities



Having witnessed how lack of health information harms Latinos’ quality of life, Alexis Smith wants to bridge the gap between researchers and marginalized communities. Originally from Alabama, Smith is a first-year master’s-degree student in public health at the Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health. Her focus is in health promotion research and practice, because she is incredibly interested in advocating for quality healthcare for all people and empowering communities through interventions that are both innovative and evidence-based. She already has served in various public health roles, from working in a community health center as a diabetes prevention coach in the Bronx, to managing social media and youth engagement for a mobile health clinic in Boston. To ...

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Planners, Here’s How to Unlock Health Equity in Your Community


health equity planning from ChangeLab Solutions

Local planners have the power to help create healthy, fair communities. Unfortunately, common planning practices have contributed to the high percentage of poor people and people of color who live in unhealthy places, widening disparities in health and wealth. That's why our friends at ChangeLab Solutions created Long Range-Planning for Health, Equity & Prosperity: A Primer for Local Governments. This can help planners prioritize health and equity in their work. "By integrating health and equity considerations into planning practices, planners have the power to revise past planning decisions and create healthy, equitable, and prosperous communities," ChangeLab reports. Place Matters for Health Equity Where you live matters for your health. Inequitable city planning, ...

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Sophia Rodriguez: From Culture Clash to Latino Health Promotion



Growing up, Sophia Rodriguez experienced a clash of Peruvian-Mexican cultures, traditional values, and food in her home. This prepared her to confront uncomfortable health and social justice issues. Now Rodriguez is pushing for Latino health as a master’s-degree student in health promotion and behavioral science at San Diego State University, where she also works as part of a research team to boost colorectal cancer screening. Rodriguez also has coordinated programs for disadvantaged pre-med and pre-health students with the University of California, Riverside. One of the programs involved health coaches stationed at Riverside County clinics that focused on lifestyle modifications for patients with diabetes, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol. To further her experience ...

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In Cities With a Soda Tax, Shoppers Buy Fewer Sugary Drinks


sugary drink tax shopper latina woman grocery store

Sugary drink taxes are taking out the fizz across the nation. From Washington, D.C., to Berkeley, Calif., sugary drink taxes are raising the price of soda, tea, and energy drinks, with the hope that people will buy fewer taxed drinks. These drinks do not contribute to good health, according to a Salud America! research review. But are shoppers really buying fewer sugary drinks as a result? A series of studies explores this question. How Sugary Drink Taxes Affect Purchases A new study from Mathematica Policy Research and others indicates that sugary drink taxes can reduce purchases of sugary drinks. Researchers examined the impact of taxes in four cities: Philadelphia, San Francisco, Seattle, and Oakland. They compared changes in household monthly purchases to nearby cities ...

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Marissa Jauregui: Mexico Native Takes Aim at Latino Health Disparities



Mexico holds a special place in Marissa Jauregui’s heart. Jauregui has taught English to students in Yucatan as a Fulbright scholar, and she grew up traveling to visit her grandparents. Now she is keeping her roots in mind as a first-year student in the Community Oriented Public Health Practice program at the University of Washington, Seattle. She already is focusing on mental health, reproductive health, health disparities, and health policy. She has strong leadership qualities and desires to conduct research and advocate for mental health services outside of the clinic. To further her experience and education, Jauregui applied for the Éxito! Latino Cancer Research Leadership Training program. The Éxito! program, led by Dr. Amelie G. Ramirez at UT Health San Antonio ...

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