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Do food and physical activity environments vary between disadvantaged urban and rural areas? Findings from the READI study

Thornton, Lukar E., Crawford, David A., Cleland, Verity J., Timperio, Anna F., Abbott, Gavin and Ball, Kylie 2012, Do food and physical activity environments vary between disadvantaged urban and rural areas? Findings from the READI study, Health promotion journal of Australia, vol. 23, no. 2, pp. 153-156.

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Title Do food and physical activity environments vary between disadvantaged urban and rural areas? Findings from the READI study
Author(s) Thornton, Lukar E.
Crawford, David A.
Cleland, Verity J.
Timperio, Anna F.
Abbott, Gavin
Ball, Kylie
Journal name Health promotion journal of Australia
Volume number 23
Issue number 2
Start page 153
End page 156
Total pages 4
Publisher Australian Health Promotion Association
Place of publication Camperdown, N. S. W.
Publication date 2012
ISSN 1036-1073
Keyword(s) built environment
neighbourhood
area-level disadvantage
rural
Summary Issues addressed: The presence or absence of amenities in local neighbourhood environments can either promote or restrict access to opportunities to engage in healthy and/or less healthy behaviours. Rurality is thought to constrain access to facilities and services. This study investigated whether the presence and density of environmental amenities related to physical activity and eating behaviours differs between socioeconomically disadvantaged urban and rural areas in Victoria, Australia.

Methods: We undertook cross-sectional analysis of environmental data collected in 2007-08 as part of the Resilience for Eating and Activity Despise Inequality (READI) study. These data were sourced and analysed for 40 urban and 40 rural socioeconomically disadvantaged areas. The variables examined were the presence, raw count, count/km2, and count/'000 population of a range of environmental amenities (fast-food restaurants, all supermarkets (also separated by major chain and other supermarkets), greengrocers, playgrounds, gyms/leisure centres, public swimming pools and public open spaces).

Results: A greater proportion of urban areas had a fast-food restaurant and gym/leisure centre present while more rural areas contained a supermarket and public swimming pool. All amenities examined (with the exception of swimming pools) were more numerous per km2 in urban areas, however rural areas had a greater number of all supermarkets, other supermarkets, playgrounds, swimming pools and public open area per '000 population.

Conclusion: Although opportunities to engage in healthy eating and physical activity exist in many rural areas, a lower density per km2 suggests a greater travel distance may be required to reach these.
Language eng
Field of Research 111799 Public Health and Health Services not elsewhere classified
Socio Economic Objective 920499 Public Health (excl. Specific Population Health) not elsewhere classified
HERDC Research category C1 Refereed article in a scholarly journal
Copyright notice ©2012, Australian Health Promotion Association
Persistent URL http://hdl.handle.net/10536/DRO/DU:30047370

Document type: Journal Article
Collections: School of Exercise and Nutrition Sciences
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Every reasonable effort has been made to ensure that permission has been obtained for items included in DRO. If you believe that your rights have been infringed by this repository, please contact drosupport@deakin.edu.au.