Healthy Communities – August 25, 2016

Sugary drinks are sweet, cheap and easy to get

Nearly half of the added sugar in the average American diet is consumed in the form of sodas and sugary drinks. Oregonians drink more than 177 million gallons of this “liquid candy” yearly, and they spend around $1.6 billion in medical expenses due to obesity-related issues. Read about the crushing impact on our healthcare system and quality of life from sugary beverages. 

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It looks like the soda tax paid off in Berkeley

Consumption of sugary drinks has slid by 21 percent in Berkeley since a one-cent-per-ounce tariff was imposed on sweetened beverages as of March 2015, according to a study published in the American Journal of Public Health. Proponents pointed to sugar as a culprit in chronic conditions such as obesity and diabetes. Intervening to curb consumption, they argued, would lead to a public health windfall.  Read more about this study here.

Applying a health equity lens to school health

During August and September each year, schools across the country open their doors to usher in another academic year. According to the US Department of Education approximately 50 million students attend public elementary and secondary schools. These students eventually will become adults that may be impacted by chronic diseases. Health behaviors and approaches to health developed during these stages of human development can last a lifetime. Read more about the importance of promoting health and preventing chronic disease in children and adolescents.

How city planning can prevent obesity

Read about the concept of mixed use development, a model in urban design where the physical layout of a city–the streets, roads and built structures–is composed of numerous interconnected, pedestrian accessible neighborhoods.

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Antidote for deadly diseases

High levels of physical activity are linked to lower risk for two cancers, diabetes, heart disease and stroke. Read about a new study demonstrating that people with high levels of weekly physical activity had a lower risk of breast cancer, colon cancer, diabetes, heart disease and stroke.

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