Healthful, Cultural Foods and Safety Net Use Among Cambodian and Brazilian Immigrant Communities in Massachusetts.
By Cordeiro L, Sibeko L, Nelson-Peterman J
Declining health and food security status among low-income immigrants in the U.S. may result from limited access to healthful, cultural foods and safety net programs. We held focus group discussions with low-income Cambodian and Brazilian immigrants (11 groups, n = 84) living in Massachusetts. Cambodians and Brazilians valued healthful, cultural foods, emphasizing their beliefs that cultural foods are healthier and beneficial for weight management and aging. Although both groups could access these foods, some individuals had difficulty affording them. Cambodians reported that food quality decreased over the month due to inadequate resources. Cambodians relied on SNAP, WIC, families, and food pantries; however, Brazilians generally did not participate in safety net programs. Barriers to accessing and using safety nets appear to limit diet quality for some immigrant families. Targeted nutrition interventions should build on current knowledge of and desire for healthful, cultural foods in the context of available safety nets.
November 14, 2017
Cordeiro L, Sibeko L, Nelson-Peterman J (2017) 'Healthful, Cultural Foods and Safety Net Use Among Cambodian and Brazilian Immigrant Communities in Massachusetts'. Journal of Immigrant and Minority Health: pp. 1-9. Available online: https://link.springer.com/article/10.1007/s10903-017-0607-3