Food Deserts: The Community That I live In
“Food desert” is a term commonly used to describe communities with little or no access to healthy food, including fresh fruits, vegetables, meats and diary products. Millions of Americans — mostly poor, many African-Americans — live in these areas. In fact, the United States Department of Agriculture reports that about 23.5 million Americans currently live in food deserts, including 6.5 million children. Typically, food deserts are defined by: 1) the lack or absence of large grocery stores and supermarkets that sell fresh produce and healthy food options; and 2) low-income populations living on tight budgets. These food deserts are also signified by high levels of obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular diseases in the community, which result from residents buying their food from corner stores that sell processed foods, and plentiful fast food options. News One
My wife, son and i live in the South East section of Washington DC its where we purchased our home 3 years ago. I would say the last 4 years has seen me trying to make an active change in how i live my life physically. Getting older and a lot of Jameson and Beer added a lot of pounds to my body. After doctors orders i needed to get back in shape or else i was heading down the wrong path. My lifestyle switch made me change everything from sleeping habits to how i eat. That is when i realized what was really going around me when it was time to make a choice on what i wanted to eat.
I live across the east river bridge, by the Shrimp Boat off Benning Road (Cue a GoGo record some where as i say that). Where there is a Safeway super market by Minnesota Ave, the next super market after that would have been in Maryland about 10 minute drive into Seat Pleasant. Unfortunately that super market closed down July 4th 2016. Outside of that all there is fast and unhealthy food choices. Which honestly is neither healthy and not affordable.
Everyone in the community was looking forward to a Walmart location one of two that was supposed to open in the south east section of the city. After they opened two previous Walmart’s in the city they backed out of the second two locations. By backing out our communities in ward 7 and ward 8 were left stranded again with out another option of healthy food choices.
Of the city’s 43 full-service grocery stores, only two are located in Ward 4, four in Ward 7, and three in Ward 8. By contrast, Ward 3 — the highest-income Ward — has eleven full-service stores.
Some days as i take my son to daycare i see people lined up for food by the church near me. Then i think about the children who only get a proper meal while they attend school. What we put in our body is the basic foundation of how we live and how we function. It effects our children’s education, it effects our health.
In a country as powerful as ours food shouldn’t be one of the problems that we have.