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According to the University of California School of Nursing, in Culture and Clinical Care, many aspects of African American culture today reflect the culture of the general US population.The structure in African American families is often nuclear and extended with non-related “family” members.Okra is the principal ingredient in gumbo, a Creole stew, and is believed to have spiritual and healthful properties.Many of these foods found their way from the south to the north via the Mississippi River.Body and Soul: A Celebration of Health Eating and Living for African Americans offers information targeted to African Americans on eating a health diet rich in fruits and vegetables.African Americans often have strong religious affiliations.African Americans are affected disproportionately by the leading causes of death in the US, with more morbidity and mortality from premature births, cancer, HIV/AIDS, obesity, and diseases related to obesity, including heart disease, hypertension, stroke, and type 2 diabetes.

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Many African Americans like hearty meals that may include meat, fish, greens, rice, grits, white and sweet potatoes, corn, turnips, eggplant, peanuts, and homemade desserts.The family may be matriarchal, although father or mother may take on the decision-making role.For African Americans, women more than men tend to remain unmarried, and more women have been educated at the college level.Each person is an individual, as well as a community member.The term African American generally refers to people descended from Africans who did not come to the US voluntarily—descendants of the four million slaves brought to the US between 16.