Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity

Why Food Policy?

Hear Hải's Story

"Some of my favorite foods growing up were Pop Tarts, pizza sticks, Hot Pockets, white cheddar Cheez-Its, and liters and liters of 7-Up and Coke. My parents did their best carrying on the traditional Vietnamese foodways. It wasn't until recently that I realized that those ingredients were part of the industrialized food system that I grew up in.

Consequently when I was 18 years old, six years ago, I [had] type 2 diabetes, hypertension, hypoglycemic, and just emotionally depressed. That year, after I visited my doctor, after the blood work was done, my doctor told me that if I continue to live the way that I was living, I would live to be 30. I don't think any 18 year old wants to hear that. So since then, I've been an advocate for real food. I'm seeking food justice within my lifetime and advocate for a fair, equitable, and just food system. I also advocate for the power of young people, and history shows us that young people have been instrumental in past social movements."

Youth Speaks: The Bigger Picture, located in San Francisco, is devoted to empowering young people to help create a new generation of literate, impassioned youth with strong voices. Youth Speaks has joined forces with the University of California San Francisco’s Center for Vulnerable Populations to create a project to combat type 2 diabetes. The project, called the Bigger Picture Campaign, encourages youth in California to “raise their voices” against the diabetes epidemic that predominantly plagues poor youth. The campaign urges young people to combat the economic, political, and social factors tightly linked with diabetes and its consequent health risks. Visit the YouTube page.

Soda Sucks is California-wide youth driven guerrilla marketing campaign that asks young people to pitch their best messages that soda damages your health.