Date: 12 January 2018
Researchers from NIHR Southampton BRC have shown that living closer to a wider variety of food outlets is linked to a better diet in children.
More than 1,000 children took part in the study, in which an area around each child’s home and school was marked out to create an ‘activity zone’.
The number and type of food outlets within each zone was recorded and parents were asked to report what their child ate for three months.
The study, published in Public Health Nutrition, found that access to a greater number and range of food outlets is linked to a better diet in children. Better access to healthier food shops, such a green grocers, was consistently linked with children having healthier diets.
It also showed that children in Southampton live closer to more unhealthy food outlets than healthy food stores, strengthening the argument for local authorities to increase the number of healthy food outlets to which young children are exposed.
You may also be interested in