Politics Economics And Nutrition

At the beginning of the twenty-first century, nearly 400,000 Aborigines lived in Australia. Unfortunately, many of them are poor. Low incomes and living in isolated areas make it difficult for them to purchase food. Because of the cost to ship food to isolated areas, food sometimes costs almost twice as much in an outlying area than in densely populated urban regions. The long shipping distance may also cause fresh fruits and vegetables to spoil. As a result, rural community stores often carry convenience foods and pre-packaged processed foods. Such foods are often higher in fat, sugar, and salt. These foods may last longer on shelves, but sometimes lack nutrients that are needed for a healthy life.

With the majority of income being spent on purchasing food, less money is available for Aborigines to spend on utilities, such as electricity, gas and water for cooking, and refrigeration for storage. Convenience foods that do not require much preparation are favored over healthier foods. As a result, Aboriginal children and adults have a higher rate of health-related problems than other Australians. Poorer diets lead to a higher rate of obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.

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