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Dishes such as hoppin’ John (rice, black-eyed peas, and salt pork), gumbos, jambalyas, fried porgies, and potlikker may all be considered soul food.Okra is the principal ingredient in gumbo, a Creole stew, and is believed to have spiritual and healthful properties.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.

In 1965, African Americans were more than twice as likely as whites to eat a recommended diet of fruit, vegetables, fat, fiber, and calcium.

By 1996, 28 percent of this population was reported to have a poor-quality diet, compared to 16 percent of whites.

The idea of what soul food is differs greatly among African Americans.

Soul food may refer to meals made with fried chicken, pork chops, chitterlings, grits, cornbread, macaroni and cheese, and hushpuppies.

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