African American Women’s Health

African American Women’s Health

Highest differences in health risk than any minority
More disease, disability and early death
Lack of health care
Less likely to receive healthcare
Often too late
Lack of trust
Cultural differences
Lack of knowledge about necessary test and screening
Generations of racism and poverty
High Fat, poor quality diets…. (Leading into diet)

Diet (interview)
Highest rates of obesity
4/5 AA women are overweight or obese
Increase the risk of diseases, HBP, stroke, diabetes, cancer etc.
Poor food options and choices
Fast food
Soul food and traditions (recipes)
Low density processed food
What’s available in the ‘hood’(no farmers market or healthy choices) plenty fast food restaurants
Lack of exercise …(leading into hair)

Hair: A lifestyle choice for African American Women (interview)
Barrier to engage in physical activity
It takes time to ‘do’ hair everyday compared to other women
The amount of money spent (poverty)
Timing is a key factor- wait until closer to her hair appointment
Often isn’t her real hair
Other barriers to low physical activity:
Culture encourages “thick” women
Gyms unavailable and unaffordable (poverty)
Some solutions: walking regimen, natural hair days, etc…

HIV/AIDS (guest speaker)
Women are 1 in 4; AA are 2 in 3 of new cases- heterosexual
AIDS-leading cause of death for AA woman 25-34
21 x’s more likely than white woman…
Incarcerated men
Down low men

Diet, lifestyle choice, relationships are all key factors
Common thread is poverty in the African American community, especially AA women.
The battle for better health begins with better resources against poverty…

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