Poverty and How it Impacts Your Child’s Health
This article may or may not impact you, depending on your current living status. However, it’s important that we are all aware of what’s happening in our neighborhoods around the corner.
Firstly, what is food insecurity? It’s the lack of access to fresh, healthy foods for an individual. Unfortunately, many families are plagued by food insecurity, and this is not by choice. As we know, not getting adequate nutrition can be detrimental to our health. The age difference for life expectancy is about 10 to 15 years between the poor and the rich. Poverty is a negative factor that influences lifelong health issues. Children who are growing up in poverty have issues with brain construction and growth as well as neurologic function. These stressful environments in poverty can result in high blood pressure and high heart rate because the stress mechanism is basically never turned off. While children are greatly affected, adults in poverty are much likely to experience inflammatory diseases such as heart disease, stroke and obesity.
How are they becoming obese if they don’t have access to food? This is because the food that they have access to is some of the cheapest food available which is often high fat foods with empty calories. Like fast food restaurants and carry-outs.
Children cannot reach their full potential without adequate nutrition. In their first five years of life, their brain grows and changes so rapidly. So if within those first five years of life they are exposed to povershed conditions, this can result in long lasting and negative effects. Having poor health interferes with their cognitive development, putting them at a disadvantage in school when it comes to behavior, learning, advancing and progressing. Pregnant women also need to have adequate nutrition in order to give birth to healthy full-term babies. Malnourished children are more susceptible to disease, growth defects, infections, and death. When we improve the health of children, we improve the health of developing countries, developing environments and future generations. Poverty is both the cause and consequence of poor health, as improving health increases a communites chance of escaping generational poverty.
So what can we do to increase food security?
1. Have more nutritional interventions in our communities. Without knowledge, there will be no desire to change.
2. Support people with ways to manage stress in their current environment.
3. Education on how to Reduce food waste
4. Volunteering with food banks to help distribute food
5. Give to those in need. If you have canned food items or any other food items that will not be used, please donate them to your local food bank.
6. Support child care programs that are dedicated to improving child development through healthy practices.
It’s time to break the cycle of generational poverty and poor health. What are some ways that we can come together as a whole to reduce generational poverty? Let me know in the comments below!
Note: please know that any purchases you make from me are going towards my efforts to bring fresh foods and nutritional education into low income communities. Grab a copy of my recipe ebook Simply Plant Based or any items from my plant based shop, Prosperiteez Clothing, LLC.