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8:30pm, January 24, 2013

Weighing factors in obesity
In “Obesity research gets weightier” (SN: 12/29/12, p. 28) Nathan Seppa says that green space and a nearby grocery store reduce the incidence of obesity. I think I understand how the green space affects it (clean air, physical activity, et cetera), but I don’t understand how the grocery store does. Is there anything showing a connection?
Ted Grinthal, Berkeley Heights, N.J.

The connection lies in access to fresh fruits and vegetables, which fight obesity. The researchers counted grocery stores that sold fruits and veggies within a half mile of neighborhoods (a positive) and fast-food shops in that radius (a negative). These yielded a nutrition score, which was combined with a physical activity score. Obesity rates in kids were 59 percent lower in neighborhoods that scored well on both, even after accounting for ra

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