We all know that fast food isn’t good for your health.
However, according to recent research, simply living near a cluster of fast-food restaurants has now been linked to a higher risk of having a stroke.
Money Talks News’ recent article entitled, “Living Near This Type of Restaurant May Boost Stroke Risk,” reports that the study found that people who are 50 and older and live near a so-called “food swamp” — where there is a high density of fast-food and junk-food options — had a 13% higher risk of stroke than people who lived in neighborhoods with more healthful options.
The study findings haven’t been published but will be presented at the American Stroke Association’s International Stroke Conference 2023.
In arriving at their findings, the researchers looked at data from the Health and Retirement Study, an ongoing study conducted at the University of Michigan that features participants from across the U.S.
This data was then matched against U.S. Department of Agriculture data about food environments to create a retail food environment index.
The index shows the ratio of unhealthy food retailers (convenience stores and fast-food restaurants) to healthy food retailers (grocery stores and farmers’ markets) in a given neighborhood.
The researchers found that most of the nearly 18,000 participants in the study lived in neighborhoods with about six times as many unhealthy food options as healthy options.
In a summary of the researchers’ findings, Dr. Dixon Yang, lead author of the study and a postdoctoral fellow at Columbia University Irving Medical Center in New York City, said, “An unhealthy diet negatively impacts blood pressure, blood glucose and cholesterol levels that increases the risk of stroke. Independent of one’s own demographics or socioeconomic status, living in a neighborhood with an abundance of poor food choices may be an important factor to consider for many people.”
Reference: Money Talks News (March 25, 2023) “Living Near This Type of Restaurant May Boost Stroke Risk”