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Category — Nutrition

Could gardening lower your risk of cancer? A Colorado researcher aims to find out

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Wally Gallaher, left, age 90 gets some help from By Cha, who helps pull up some of the weeds that have crept in while he was on vacation. Member gardeners gather at the Arvada Community Garden.

University of Colorado Boulder study measures health of community gardeners in Denver area

By Danika Worthington
The Denver Post
September 21, 2017

Excerpt:

A green thumb may lower your risk of cancer.

Don’t believe it? You’re not the only one. Which is why a University of Colorado Boulder researcher is setting out to find hard evidence during a three-year clinical trial that will measure a variety of health factors in 312 participants who will be introduced to community gardening for the first time.

“We tend to intervene from the top down,” CU Boulder professor Jill Litt said of programs to improve physical inactivity and poor diets. “You need solutions from the ground up to meet people where they’re at.”

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September 26, 2017   No Comments

Is picking edible weeds off the streets the next foodie trend?

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Chef John Farais looks for wild edible weeds that he grows in his backyard in San Rafael. (Devika G. Bansal/Bay Area News Group)

“It can’t get any more local than picking what’s growing on your front step.”

By Devika G. Bansal
Bay Area News Group
July 17, 2017

Excerpt:

People have been foraging since long before this country was founded, said Hank Shaw, a forager and chef based in Sacramento and author of the book “Hunt, Gather, Cook: Finding the Forgotten Feast.”

“But it has been growing in the last 10 years because people are starting to mistrust the industrial food system,” Shaw said. “They’re starting to take more control over what they feed their family.”

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July 28, 2017   Comments Off on Is picking edible weeds off the streets the next foodie trend?

Post-Disaster Food and Nutrition from Urban Agriculture: A Self-Sufficiency Analysis of Nerima Ward, Tokyo

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Figure 9. Disaster drill held in Nerima ward. (a) Urban farmland with a high diversity in crops; (b) Farmer and volunteers preparing soup with fresh vegetables from the farm in a portable gas stove; (c) Rice and crackers provided by the municipality as emergency food with freshly made soup containing vegetables from the farm; (d) People from the neighborhood familiarizing with each other and the farmer (photographs by the authors, November 2016).

The present study aimed to quantify the potential nutrient production of urban agricultural vegetables and the resulting nutritional self-sufficiency throughout the year for mitigating post-disaster situations.

By Giles Bruno Sioen, OrcID, Makiko Sekiyama, Toru Terada and Makoto Yokohari
Int. J. Environ. Res. Public Health 2017
(Must see. Mike)

Abstract:

Background: Post-earthquake studies from around the world have reported that survivors relying on emergency food for prolonged periods of time experienced several dietary related health problems. The present study aimed to quantify the potential nutrient production of urban agricultural vegetables and the resulting nutritional self-sufficiency throughout the year for mitigating post-disaster situations. Methods: We estimated the vegetable production of urban agriculture throughout the year. Two methods were developed to capture the production from professional and hobby farms: Method I utilized secondary governmental data on agricultural production from professional farms, and Method II was based on a supplementary spatial analysis to estimate the production from hobby farms. Next, the weight of produced vegetables [t] was converted into nutrients [kg].

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July 16, 2017   Comments Off on Post-Disaster Food and Nutrition from Urban Agriculture: A Self-Sufficiency Analysis of Nerima Ward, Tokyo

India: Gardening for nutrition in bastis (slums)

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Lady of a basti family holding her baby and showing the pumpkin she grew with pride.

“The mission of Urban Health Resource Centre is to bring about sustainable improvements in the health conditions of the urban poor by influencing policies and programmes and empowering the community.”

From their Facebook Page
Urban Health Resource Centre

Excerpt:

Slum families usually have very small houses. Therefore, they find it nearly impossible to grow enough vegetables to yield ample fresh produce to use for nutritious meals. Along with nutrition, growing plants provides confidence and a sense for making their immediate world more beautiful and natural.

Caring for plants gives a sense of well being in a place where it is most desperately needed With soft, attentive motivation and gentle perseverance, UHRC’s social facilitators encouraged slum families to grow vegetables that would thrive in their respective houses.

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June 28, 2017   Comments Off on India: Gardening for nutrition in bastis (slums)

Namibia: ‘Growing Food in Windhoek’ Handbook

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By producing food in and around the city, we can connect – the production with the market, experiments, ideas and solutions, and people of all ages and all walks of life.

Excerpt:

Namibia needs to urgently tackle hunger, undernourishment and malnutrition. Thee latest data stems from the 2016 Global Hunger Index of the International Food Policy Research Institute (IFPRI).

In this report, “hunger” refers to four indicators – undernourishment, child stunting (low height-for-age), child wasting (low weight-for-height), and child mortality.

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April 24, 2017   Comments Off on Namibia: ‘Growing Food in Windhoek’ Handbook

How one South Carolina woman is creating an oasis in a food desert

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With the departure of big name grocery stores, the area has been declared a food desert – defined by the USDA as a low-income community of at least 500 people and/or at least 33 percent of the census tract’s population residing more than one mile from a supermarket or large grocery store.

By Susan Ardis
The State
Apr 4, 2017

Excerpt:

On what was once a vacant lot behind Chicora Graded School – on Success Street – Germaine Jenkins is planting the seeds of hope and sustainability with Fresh Future Farm, a 0.81 acre, no-till organic farm growing fresh fruits and vegetables and providing fresh honey and eggs directly to the community.

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April 11, 2017   Comments Off on How one South Carolina woman is creating an oasis in a food desert

Milwaukee: How to Create 3,000 Urban Gardens

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Volunteers dig deep in the Victory Garden Urban Farm, located in Harambee at 220 E. Concordia Ave.

Non-profit Victory Gardens Initiative fills city’s food deserts with fresh produce.

By Naomi Waxman
Milwaukee Neighborhood News Service
Mar 14th, 2017

Excerpt:

“The core niche of what I do is about home, growing your own food in your own home and giving your children the nourishment they need for their brains and bodies,” said Mead.

Since 2008, that single plot has blossomed into the Victory Garden Initiative (VGI), a thriving community of staff and volunteers committed to helping Milwaukee residents grow their own food and cook nutritious meals for their families.

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March 20, 2017   Comments Off on Milwaukee: How to Create 3,000 Urban Gardens

California: Contra Costa County’s Subsidized-Housing Communities To Get A Large Community Garden And Urban Farm

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Ray Harts has plans to start with 10 raised garden beds, a 500 square foot shade structure and and an urban farm where crops would be sold to local restaurants. (Susan Tripp Pollard/Bay Area News Group)

“This garden will produce unity — it will bring people together, even if it’s just for the vegetables,” Aqeel said.

By Sam Richards
East Bay Times
Mar 13, 2017

Excerpt:

Pittsburg, California — Heracio Harts grew up near the El Pueblo housing project, and now he’s come back to grow vegetables there.

Harts, known by most as “Ray,” stands on a 2-acre plot, thick with tall grass fed by recent rains. That rain has also added a layer of rust to an old baseball backstop he said he’ll tear out to make room for a community garden behind the El Pueblo main office.

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March 19, 2017   Comments Off on California: Contra Costa County’s Subsidized-Housing Communities To Get A Large Community Garden And Urban Farm

International Journal of Epidemiology: Eating more fruits and vegetables may prevent millions of premature deaths

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Thomas Angus [Photographer].

“We wanted to investigate how much fruit and vegetables you need to eat to gain the maximum protection against disease, and premature death. Our results suggest that although five portions of fruit and vegetables is good, ten a day is even better.”

By Kate Wighton
Imperial College London
23 February 2017
Excerpt:

This is the finding of new research, led by scientists from Imperial College London, which analysed 95 studies on fruit and vegetable intake.

The team found that although even the recommended five portions of fruit and vegetables a day reduced disease risk, the greatest benefit came from eating 800g a day (roughly equivalent to ten portions – one portion of fruit or vegetables if defined as 80g).

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March 17, 2017   Comments Off on International Journal of Epidemiology: Eating more fruits and vegetables may prevent millions of premature deaths

Urban Farm providing affordable healthy options in Jacksonville, Florida

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“Many local merchants believe that people would not buy fruits and vegetables. But they would if given the opportunity,” said Maxey. He invites families to come to the Urban Farm to get exactly what they need.

By Ashley Harding
News 4JAX
Mar 3, 2017

Excerpt:

People in New Town said they just don’t have many resources for healthy living. That’s why, a community garden through Urban Geoponics is hoping to change that by providing healthy food that are affordable.

The garden is located at the Urban Farm at 3rd and Pearce streets in New Town.

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March 11, 2017   Comments Off on Urban Farm providing affordable healthy options in Jacksonville, Florida

A Washington D.C. Urban Farm Takes On Urban Problems

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Dreaming Out Loud’s new farm hopes to provide jobs, business incubation, and more in a city ward that has often been overlooked.

By Whitney Pipkin
Civil Eats
Jan 19, 2017

Excerpt:

Little more than grass used to grow on the two-acre plot behind a middle school in the District of Columbia where tomatoes, okra, and infrastructure for food entrepreneurs will begin cropping up this year.

In a ward of the city with just two grocery stores serving more than 70,000 residents, fresh produce is hard to come by. But the Kelly Miller Farm, which will be situated behind a middle school with the same name, aims to offer much more: youth programs, a community garden accessible to seniors, and a commercial kitchen from which area residents can launch food-based businesses.

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January 25, 2017   Comments Off on A Washington D.C. Urban Farm Takes On Urban Problems

First Bite: How We Learn to Eat

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Bee introduces us to people who can only eat food of a certain colour; toddlers who will eat nothing but hot dogs; doctors who have found radical new ways to help children eat vegetables

By Bee Wilson
Basic Books
Originally Harper Collins
Reprint edition (November 8, 2016)

We are not born knowing what to eat. We all have to learn it as children sitting expectantly at a table. For our diets to change, we need to relearn the food experiences that first shaped us.
Everyone starts drinking milk. After that it’s all up for grabs.

We are not born knowing what to eat; we each have to figure it out for ourselves. From childhood onwards, we learn how big a portion is and how sweet is too sweet. We learn to love broccoli or not. But how does this happen? What are the origins of taste? And once we acquire our food habits, can we ever change them for the better?

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January 21, 2017   Comments Off on First Bite: How We Learn to Eat

Bonton Farms Plants Hope in the Middle of Dallas Food Desert

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From Bonton Farms, photographed in November.

Residents who live in Bonton, which is one of the oldest historic black neighborhoods in Dallas, did not decide to grow their own produce out of a desire to follow a food trend. Just like hundreds of thousands of other people who live in the southern sector of one of the wealthiest cities in America, they live in a food desert.

By Courtney Gilmore
NBC DFW
Dec 20, 2016

Excerpt:

“We have the number one childhood poverty rate in the United States and that is unacceptable,” Babcock said. “For a city that’s as prosperous as Dallas, that’s unacceptable. That we have 40 communities that are sick and dying that don’t have food. That’s unacceptable.”

Daron began to notice the correlation between the lack of healthy food options and the high rate of diabetes, heart disease, cancer and stroke.

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December 28, 2016   Comments Off on Bonton Farms Plants Hope in the Middle of Dallas Food Desert

The Greater Newark Conservancy helps inner city children get a nutritious diet

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concr
Court Street Urban Farm. Land sits next to the Krueger-Scott Mansion, an 1888 landmark once owned by a city beer baron. We’ve been able to produce over 15,000 pounds of produce during the course of one growing season! Click on image for larger file.

The conservancy recruits teenagers from all Newark high schools as paid interns. They work 25- to 30-hour weeks in the summer and 10- to 15-hour weeks during the school year.

By Jane Primerano
NJ Spotlight
Nov 30, 2016

Excerpt:

Besides the Court Street farm, a larger parcel on Hawthorne Street functions as a community garden where residents lease their own plots. There are 200 4- by 8-foot raised beds that are leased by residents who pay $10 a year and receive $20 worth of seeds, according to director of Urban Agriculture Justin Allen.

Robin Dougherty, the executive director of the conservancy, said the not-for-profit group would love to expand the reach of its Urban Agriculture program, but an economic boom in the city may present difficulties.

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December 6, 2016   Comments Off on The Greater Newark Conservancy helps inner city children get a nutritious diet

Productive spaces assessed in Food System and Food Security Study for the City of Cape Town

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fodeat
Figure 9.7: Foods eaten by households in Cape Town in the previous 24 hours (Source: Battersby, 2011, p15) Click on image for larger file.

The Provincial Department of Agriculture has supported 114 community gardens within the City since 2008 to present.

Prepared by: Jane Battersby (UCT)
Gareth Haysom (UCT)
Godfrey Tawodzera (UCT)
Milla McLachlan (Stellenbosch)
Jonathan Crush (UCT)
First Public Report July 2016
July 5, 2014
334 pages

Excerpt:

Productive spaces

The in-city food production is of benefit to a city like Cape Town, particularly in terms of delivering cheaper food and bringing greater dietary diversity and nutritional benefit. The discussion of Cape Town’s in-house food supply focuses on commercial agriculture and the form and fate of the unique productive agriculturally-zoned areas within the boundaries of the City of Cape Town (Chapter 4) and urban agriculture (Chapter 5). A constant theme is the tension between the valuation of agricultural land in terms of its

contribution to food security versus alternative means of valuation such as the argued need for land for development and housing options. Detailed information is available on this element of the food system and its analysis prompts the following conclusions:

• There is vital agricultural production within Cape Town. While there is large-scale production of grapes and other fruit for export, there is also high production of staple vegetables and livestock, both of which support more local consumption;

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July 26, 2016   Comments Off on Productive spaces assessed in Food System and Food Security Study for the City of Cape Town