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Food stamps don't cover heart-healthy food

Posted - Nov. 9, 2004 at 12:40 p.m.



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NEW ORLEANS, Nov 09, 2004 (United Press International via COMTEX) -- Boston researchers have found that most food stamp beneficiaries can't afford heart-healthy food options.

The insights, presented at a recent medical conference in New Orleans, found that in Roxbury, Mass., a family of four would need to spend $227 a month in excess of food stamp benefits to make heart-healthy foods part of their daily diet, researchers said. A senior living alone would need at least $100 extra.

"Low-income people, in this particular community, who receive food stamp benefits have very limited access to a culturally appropriate diet filled with heart-healthy foods," said a researcher.

"Food cost can be a significant barrier to developing and maintaining healthy lifestyle behaviors."

Roxbury is one of the poorest neighborhoods in Boston. Twenty-seven percent of its residents live below the federal poverty level, and according to self reports, they have some of the worst lifestyle habits in Boston.

Copyright 2004 by United Press International.

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