Health is not something found at the doctor's office. Health starts in the conditions and circumstances that shape our lives – the places where we live, work, learn and play. These social determinants are the foundation of our opportunities for health and for choosing healthy options. Decades of research offer an abundance of evidence illustrating how social environments with diminished opportunities – lacking in basic resources (such as nutritional food and quality housing), impaired by inadequacies of place (including a shortage of recreation areas and limited transportation options) and disadvantaged by circumstances like violence and poverty – are the environments that experience the burden of disease and premature death.
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