Supermarket in public housing community has positive effect only where there were transportation barriers

  • Date: 02/26/2024

Objective: The aim of the present study is to utilize a natural experiment and examine changes in dietary patterns of predominantly low-income, racial and ethnic minority children who live in a public housing community following the opening of a new supermarket.

Results: Living close to the new supermarket was not significantly associated with dietary outcomes at follow-up. However, for children who lived in households with no vehicle access, living close to the new supermarket was associated with increased fruit and vegetable consumption, compared to children in the comparison group.

Conclusion: Proximity to the new supermarket was not associated with improved dietary outcomes among children unless they had transportation barriers. This adds to the growing body of literature that suggests that the effects of neighborhood food environments may be modified by individuals’ mobility, and that comprehensive interventions are needed.

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