And fast foot companies have specifically targeted African American communities as a growing market for their products.Although many African Americans eat foods such as greens, beans, and rice, which are rich in nutrients, economic issues and deep-rooted dietary habits create challenges for changing behaviors and lowering disease risk in this population.Before the advent of health ministries, African American churches had mission volunteers who attended services and administered to parishioners.
By 1996, 28 percent of this population was reported to have a poor-quality diet, compared to 16 percent of whites.
A poor quality diet often can be attributed to greater access to packaged, processed, and fast foods; the common practice of using fats in cooking; and the high cost of fresh produce and lean meat.
African Americans are affected disproportionately by the leading causes of death in the US, with more morbidity and mortality from premature births, cancer, HIV/AIDS, obesity, and diseases related to obesity, including heart disease, hypertension, stroke, and type 2 diabetes.
* African American men have higher rates of getting and dying from prostate cancer than other men.
Cajun and Creole cooking, which originated from the French and Spanish in Louisiana, was changed in character and composition by the influence of African cooks.
In 1965, African Americans were more than twice as likely as whites to eat a recommended diet of fruit, vegetables, fat, fiber, and calcium.Traditional African-American food—sometimes referred to as “soul food”—is diverse and flavorful with origins in Africa, the West Indies, and American southern states.The idea of what soul food is differs greatly among African Americans.In general, the older generation is more conservative, may have a more traditional view of gender roles, and may shun interracial dating and marriage.Elders are respected and often provide care for their grandchildren.Many are affiliated with Christian denominations—notably Baptist and Church of God in Christ. Maintaining good health is associated with good religious practice.