A food swamp is an area where unhealthy food options greatly outnumber grocery stores. Food swamps have many fast-food restaurants and convenience stores, but very few markets selling fresh produce and other healthy foods. Researchers have linked food swamps to higher obesity rates. If your neighborhood is filled with drive-through restaurant chains and convenience stores selling easy to grab pre-packaged foods, you could be living in a food swamp.
One of the surest signs of a food swamp is the presence of numerous fast-food restaurants within a small geographic radius. Food swamps do not lack options for buying food; there's just not healthy food. You can buy plenty of the greasy, low-nutrition food found at these chains. One study found that when fast-food options greatly outnumber grocery stores, people still buy more fast-food despite the availability of healthier choices.
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