Posted by Dr. Chavonda Jacobs-Younger, Beneath Secretary, Analysis, Training, and Economics & USDA Chief Scientist in

Analysis and Science

Feb 28, 2023

Dr. Chavonda Jacobs-Young, Under Secretary, Research, Education, and Economics & USDA Chief Scientist

As I mirror on Black Historical past Month, I take into consideration the large accomplishments and contributions made by Black People. I consider the previous, current and future to acknowledge how far we’ve come, the place we are actually, and the challenges forward.

For me, one essentially the most regarding challenges nonetheless dealing with Black People is the disproportional excessive charges of most cancers and continual illnesses. With the Facilities for Illness Management and Prevention reporting half of all African American adults have some type of heart problems, and that Black women and men have the very best charges of dying from most cancers – one thing should change.

This subject hits very near residence for me. Rising up in Georgia, meals was part of my communities’ tradition and heritage. Meals introduced folks collectively, the dishes had been scrumptious, nonetheless they weren’t all the time good for our well being. This led to a lot of our staple dishes being loaded with extra sodium and energy.

Sadly, it was this strategy to consuming that left a lot of my members of the family in the end combating coronary heart illness, diabetes, kidney illness, hypertension, and most cancers. As jarring as this may occasionally appear, this is only one of many related tales shared by Black People.

ASCEND and Southern University Event

Lately in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, I heard related experiences echoed by Black group members at a listening session at Southern College. This listening session was the primary in a collection hosted by USDA’s Agricultural Science Middle of Excellence for Vitamin and Eating regimen for Higher Well being (ASCEND for Higher Well being) to debate how meals entry, vitamin safety, and weight loss program have an effect on well being outcomes in underserved communities.

ASCEND for Higher Well being is a brand new USDA initiative that goals to scale back the burden of diet-related continual illnesses, like most cancers, by enhancing precision vitamin analysis and sharing that analysis with the communities it impacts. ASCEND for Higher Well being additionally helps President Biden’s Most cancers Moonshot to finish most cancers as we all know it and is tied to the targets specified by the White Home Nationwide Technique on Starvation, Vitamin, and Well being.

As we step into Nationwide Vitamin Month tomorrow, I’m looking forward to the longer term well being and wellbeing of Black People because of initiatives like USDA’s ASCEND for Higher Well being. A brighter future is forward during which wholesome, nutritious meals are accessible to all and particular vitamin recommendation is on the market so everybody can dwell lengthy, high-quality and affluent lives.

Analysis and Science