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Food Insecurity and the Obesity Epidemic: A Political Economy Perspective

The scientific literature is immersed with discourse on how individual risk factors and obesogenic pollutants in the built environment exacerbate obesity prevalence. This paper deviates from the contemporary dialogue and focuses on a political economy perspective. This perspective calls for a macro-level approach in order to understand why higher levels of food insecurity and obesity persist in the most vulnerable communities in the U.S. and globally. The problem of food scarcity is linked to factors that contribute to obesity related risk factors. The political economy lens recognizes this association and therefore, explores larger dimensions, that is, Institutions that influence the availability, production and dissemination of food products, the impact of profit maximization on food commodities and the effect of dominant social forces on decision making. This paper summarizes research findings associated with food inadequacy and the obesity epidemic to address the underlying political, economic and social factors that shape this discourse.


Taylor-Jones M

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