You are what you think your social network eats: Public housing, social networks, and fast-food consumption

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

High-sodium diets (e.g., fast-food intake, FF) may contribute to increased hypertension risk among low-income populations. We examined the association between FF intake and perceived social-network member FF intake among Baltimore public housing residents. We analyzed 2014–2015 cross-sectional data. Our dependent variable was FF intake (eating FF weekly versus not), and our independent variable was perceiving one or more network member eating FF weekly. We used multivariable Poisson regression with robust variance, adjusted for individual and network covariates. The 266 public housing residents had mean age 44.5 years: 86.1% women, 95.5% African American, 56.8% hypertension, and 42.8% who ate FF weekly. Residents were significantly more likely to eat FF weekly if they perceived that their network contained one or more members who consumed FF weekly (relative risk 1.50, 95%CI 1.05–2.14, p=.02). Given the association between personal and social network consumption of FF weekly, further investigation may be warranted of novel social network interventions for dietary behavior change.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1712-1726
Number of pages15
JournalJournal of health care for the poor and underserved
Volume31
Issue number4
DOIs
StatePublished - Nov 2020

Keywords

  • African American
  • Dietary sodium
  • Fast foods
  • Health risk behaviors
  • Minority health
  • Public housing
  • Social networking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health

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