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, 178 (9), 1177-80

Health Geography: Supporting Public Health Policy and Planning

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Health Geography: Supporting Public Health Policy and Planning

Trevor J B Dummer. CMAJ.

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Figure 1: Exploratory spatial analysis of children's eating habits in Liverpool, United Kingdom. Data on individual children's food choices in Liverpool were mapped to identify areas of good eating habits (darker shaded areas in Map A). A small area of good eating habits (boxed area in Map A) is located in a community that crosses 2 census wards (Map B). One of these wards has a very high level of socio-economic deprivation and poverty (Map B). However, Map C shows that, despite the high level of deprivation, the local built environment contains many open spaces, parks, recreation facilities and allotment gardens for growing fruit and vegetables, and these factors are potentially associated with children making better diet choices. The use of a geographic approach for analyzing, mapping and integrating different data sets allows data to be explored in a novel way. Although this is an exploratory method, it provides some hypotheses, such as the role of the built environment in influencing food choices, that can be analytically tested and that can provide suggestions for policies that might help tackle obesity problems. Used with permission from EDINA/Ordnance Survey. © Crown Copyright/database right 2007. An Ordnance Survey/EDINA supplied service.

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