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Abstract

Recent studies examine the impact of the built environment on health outcomes such as obesity. Several studies find for certain populations that access to unhealthy food has a positive effect on obesity, whereas access to healthy choices has a negative effect. Given the growth and popularity of locally grown food, we examine how individual weight outcomes are affected by access to direct-to-consumer local food. After controlling for potential endogeneity, we find that greater access to local food has a negative association with individual weight outcomes. We also find a negative association with greater weight loss over a one-year period. These results provide evidence that local food access can have potential indirect benefits.

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