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Many are affiliated with Christian denominations—notably Baptist and Church of God in Christ. Maintaining good health is associated with good religious practice.Many churches maintain a health ministry, through which congregations and parish nurses support good health with flu shots, blood pressure checks, and health education.Leafy greens may include spinach, collards, mustard, kale, and cabbage.Traditionally, many elders eat a large noon meal on Sunday after church.Before the advent of health ministries, African American churches had mission volunteers who attended services and administered to parishioners.African Americans are becoming increasingly health conscious, seeking health screenings and treatments, although health literacy in this population tends to vary by generation.Body and Soul: A Celebration of Health Eating and Living for African Americans offers information targeted to African Americans on eating a health diet rich in fruits and vegetables.
National programs to improve diet quality and the overall health of African Americans and other minority groups have been initiated.Each person is an individual, as well as a community member.The term African American generally refers to people descended from Africans who did not come to the US voluntarily—descendants of the four million slaves brought to the US between 16.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.
Okra is the principal ingredient in gumbo, a Creole stew, and is believed to have spiritual and healthful properties.