Study shows most Filipinos in Long Beach grapple with healthier food access
Even if everyone wishes to shift to a healthier lifestyle, not all can afford to do so just as how the Filipino community in Long Beach, California is struggling to access to healthier food.
New findings revealed on Oct. 30 by the city’s health department show that 38 percent of 219 participants out of 20,000 Filipino respondents were grappling with the affordability of healthy food in the past year—eight percent of which claimed it was “always” an issue while five percent expressed feeling “regularly” worried.
In response to the city’s initiative to know COVID-19’s impact on people of color, the Filipino Community Health Needs Assessment presented the aforementioned results.
Hit hard are the Filipinos in the Westside area where most of them reside. The area is historically known for having scarcity for healthier food options, making it a possible candidate for the food market program.
Many in Long Beach’s Filipino community struggle with access to healthy food, new study shows https://t.co/Ai82w2tpoz
— Long Beach Post (@LongBeachPost) November 15, 2023
“We also have heard in our listening sessions the link between not having enough access to nutritious foods and being able to make better health decisions about the food we’re eating,” shared Filipino, Native Hawaiian, and Pacific Islander Health Equity coordinator Harold Dela Cruz.
At the Oct. 30 discussion, residents shared their thoughts: hoping for a break from red meat, white rice, fried goods, and having access to more affordable groceries. This is what exactly the report echoes where participants also expressed their needs for more farmer’s markets, parks, and grocery stores, in their neighborhoods.
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In addition to the survey’s results are these health findings from the participating Filipinos in Long Beach:
- 36 percent had been diagnosed with high blood pressure
- 15 percent or survey respondents have a diabetes diagnosis
- 57 percent have diabetes in their family tree
- Younger generations are leaning more into mental health care needs than the older people
Meanwhile, even if doing more physical activities outside can be a solution to the health issues, walking isn’t an option for 22 percent of the respondents as they didn’t feel safe doing so.
Although Dela Cruz noted that it’s hard to make grand conclusions considering the small sample size, the Filipino Community Advisory Community is crafting programs and policies based on the results of the health report.