This review summarizes growing evidence of disparities in the social and physical environments of U.S. children and adolescents that likely contribute to increased risk for obesity and poor nutrition. The review examines literature on disparities in nutrition and healthy food access in school, child-care, and residential neighborhood environments, food production and marketing practices, and cultural norms and discrimination, according to socioeconomic status, race/ethnicity, and urbanization. Studies about school environments examined policies, nutritional quality of meals, access to competitive foods, and food access in surrounding neighborhoods. Most literature about child-care environments focused on the nutritional quality of foods and beverages served to children. A review of neighborhood environments concluded that lower-income, ethnic/racial minority, and rural neighborhoods are most often affected by poor access to supermarkets and healthful food and greater availability of fast-food restaurants and energy-dense foods. The evidence from studies about food marketing shows that ethnic/racial minority children have greater exposure to advertisements for energy-dense, nutrient-poor foods. Literature suggests that cultural norms shape body image perceptions, feeding practices, and food preferences, and discrimination against certain ethnic/racial groups may influence access to healthy, affordable foods and stress-related food behaviors. The authors conclude with a discussion of future research needs.
Barriers to Equity in Nutritional Health for U.S. Children and Adolescents: A Review of the Literature
Examining the Effects of Taxes and Warning Labels on Parents’ Purchases of Sugar-Sweetened Beverages Using a Choice Experiment
The purpose of this study is to conduct a discrete choice experiment to investigate whether warning labels on Sugar-Sweetened Beverages (SSBs) alter the effectiveness of a tax on SSBs, especially among parents who are Black, Latinx and lower income. The research team will conduct an online choice experiment with 2,700 … More
SHIFT: Testing Culturally Appropriate Messaging for Black Community to Limit Children’s Sugary-Beverage Intake and Increase Water Consumption
The project’s goal is to conduct a randomized, controlled trial to evaluate the impact of a culturally appropriate social behavior change communication campaign on sugar-sweetened beverage (SSB) and water consumption among black families with children aged 0-5 years. Specific aims include: (1) Deliver a culturally appropriate social behavior change communication … More
This study seeks to develop and test the impact of “nudges” in an online grocery store on purchases of fruit drinks and healthier substitutes among a sample of low-income parents of children ages 1-5 years. The goal of this project is to reduce fruit drink intake among low-income children, including … More