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Oct 19, 2011 6:56 PM by Matt Stafford

Study: Living in poor neighborhood can hurt health

ATLANTA (AP) - Back in the 1990s, the federal government tried an unusual social experiment: It offered thousands of poor women in big-city public housing a chance to live in more affluent neighborhoods.

A decade later, the results show that women who relocated had lower rates of diabetes and extreme obesity. Those differences are being hailed as compelling evidence that where you live can determine your health, especially if your home is in a low-income area with few safe places to exercise, limited food options and meager medical services.

The experiment was initially aimed at researching whether moving impoverished families to more prosperous areas could improve employment or schooling. But a study released Wednesday in the New England Journal of Medicine looked primarily at the women's physical condition.

 

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