A recent report from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation estimates the medical cost savings from reductions in obesity rates.  Here's how a Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel article identifies the benefits to Wisconsin.
Every little bit counts, whether it's increasing physical activity in schools and workplaces, making fresh fruits and vegetables more affordable, or losing 10 pounds through exercise and better eating.

The ultimate payoff for Wisconsin could add up to $11.96 billion in health care savings if the average resident trimmed just 5% from his or her body mass index by 2030
Healthier eating is probably a Good Thing. It probably doesn't prolong life, although those last years will be less miserable. But a full analysis of the consequences of cheaper food ought consider the benefits, either private or public, of people no longer dying of starvation or malnutrition.

On a more micro level, there's probably room for further analysis of the allocation of space in convenience store refrigerators.
The Lindsay Heights [in Milwaukee] Healthy Corner Store Initiative is working with three neighborhood corner stores. The effort is in its early stages and the amount of available produce in the three stores currently is limited.

Refrigeration space is an issue, as corner stores typically stock snack foods and grocery staples, and don't have much refrigerated shelf space.
The refrigerated space that is there often chills pop and beer. Discuss.

1 comment:

yinn said...

When produce shows up at the local food pantry, it disappears fast. People want fresh food, especially for their children. However, in many cases the push to provide produce in the so-called "food deserts" reflects a misdiagnosis of the problem as one of availability. It often is not. People who feel short on money, who feel threatened with food deprivation, will shift to selecting cheap foods that are calorie dense because the problem is more basic than nutrition, it's about getting enough. And even when circumstances change, it can be a hard habit to break.