April is National Minority Health Month

What are health disparities? According to the Minority Health and Health Disparities Research and Education Act of 2000, legislation which authorizes several HHS programs, describes these disparities as differences in “the overall rate of disease incidence (number of newly diagnosed cases of disease), prevalence (total number of cases of a disease), morbidity (amount of illness and injury caused by a disease), mortality (number of deaths caused by a disease) or survival rates.” There are several factors that contribute to health disparities. Many different populations are affected by disparities including racial and ethnic minorities, residents of rural areas, women, children, the elderly, and persons with disabilities.”

This national observance is sponsored by the HHS Office of Minority Health

One initiative to help reduce these disparities is the observance of National Minority Health Month.  This year’s theme, Minority Health and School Food: What’s the Link? brings attention to the primary means of preventing so many conditions that disproportionately affect ethnic minorities.  Chronic conditions such as extreme weight gain and obesity, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and diabetes which once only affected adults are now diagnosed in children with a greater and greater frequency.  Since these conditions are so closely linked to diet and physical activity, this year’s campaign looks to change diet and therefore change lives.  Look for more posts this month highlighting the nutritional value and health benefits of various foods.  In the meantime, explore the following past posts that discuss health disparities in a number of disease and conditions.

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