Obesity is the second leading cause of preventable deaths in the US after cigarette smoking. Latinos are especially hard hit, developing diabetes and other obesity related health problems at high rates. Reporter Nova Safo visits the predominantly Latino city of Santa Ana, California to see how biology, economics and environment all contribute to the problem.
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Nova Safo is a Los Angeles-based reporter who covers a wide variety of topics ranging from the Hollywood entertainment industry, to visual arts, culture, politics, policy, health, science, the future of energy, economics, and the occasional massive wildfire.
His reporting has been heard on NPR’s various newsmagazines and other public radio programs, and published online by Yahoo! News and others. He is the recipient of Hearst journalism awards for radio reporting, as well as an NLGJA/RTNDA award for excellence in online journalism.
A number of cities have taken up programs to put more fresh foods into corner stores to improve so-called “food deserts.” Nevin Cohen, an assistant professor at the New School in New York, shares his thoughts on whether having more fresh fruits and vegetables in low-income neighborhoods really affects obesity rates–or if the problem goes beyond access to certain foods.
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Nevin Cohen is an Assistant Professor of Environmental Studies at The New School,where he teaches courses in urban food systems and environmental studies, including cross-disciplinary courses that connect the fields of policy, urban planning, design, and urban studies. Dr. Cohen’s current research focuses on the development of urban food policy. He has a PhD in Urban Planning from Rutgers University, a Masters in City and Regional Planning from Berkeley, and a BA from Cornell.
Performance artist Mero Cocinero Karimi has focused his work in the past few years around educating and empowering communities at risk for Type II diabetes. He shares part of a new performance piece, called “28 days of good energia,” drawn from stories and practices on food and health he’s collected around the country.
Click here to download this week’s show. Image courtesy of All Googly.
Mero Cocinero Karimi is an Iranian-Guatemalan cook to revolutionaries & dreamers, and host of The Cooking Show con Karimi & Comrades, a live cooking performance for your heart, mind, stomach & funny bone. His role as an advocate for healthy communities through laughter & cooking has brought him to Alaska, Mexico, and everywhere in between. A frequent speaker on television shows & at universities, the Associated Press called his show ‘a globally flavored recipe that packs some punch lines.’ Mero is a proud graduate of the Paolo Freire Culinary Institute, and has cooked for such luminaries as DJ Peanut Butter Wolf, poets Tato Laviera, Jose Montoya, Yuri Kochiyama and Michele Serros, and hiphop superstar MF Doom. His latest episodes focus on cultural foods as a source of healing. For him ‘the revolution starts in the kitchen, one kitchen at a time.’
In 2007, Guatemalan immigrant Encarnacion Bail Romero was detained at an immigration raid where she worked. By the time she was released, her six-month-old U.S.-born son was handed to another family for adoption, and his name was changed from Carlos to Jameson against her will. For more on Romero’s fight for her child’s custody, we speak to Michelle Brané, the Director of Detention and Asylum at the Women’s Refugee Commission.
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Michelle Brané is one of the nation’s foremost experts on U.S. immigration detention and reform. She is the Director of the Detention and Asylum program at the Women’s Refugee Commission, and she advocates for the critical protection needs of immigrant women, children and other vulnerable migrant populations in the United States. She authored the 2007 Women’s Refugee Commission landmark report on family detention, Locking Up Family Values and the 2009 report on unaccompanied migrant children, Halfway Home, and is the senior editor of all the Detention and Asylum Program’s reports. Ms. Brané is an attorney with more than 25 years of experience working on immigration and human rights issues.