Nutrition

Expert Voices

Health of immigrants at risk in changes to public assistance policies

doctor evaluating patient in an exam room
A patient visits a clinic in Solana Beach, Calif., that serves a large immigrant population. Photo: Sandy Huffaker/Corbis via Getty Images

The Trump administration's recently finalized “public charge” rule — which would make use of certain public assistance programs by immigrants grounds for denying lawful permanent residence — extends a series of policy changes that could negatively affect the health of both legal and undocumented immigrants in the U.S.

Why it matters: Health insurance, nutrition benefits and housing assistance are all linked to health outcomes, particularly in children. Although the 46 million immigrants in the U.S. are generally healthier and use fewer health resources than native-born residents, additional barriers to care could increase rates of obesity, malnutrition and transmission of communicable diseases.

The craft chocolate revolution

Three types of chocolate brownies
At Dandelion Cafe, San Francisco. Photo: Molly DeCoudreaux/Dandelion

Wine experts get loads of respect, with their oenologists, viticulturists, masters of wine, not to mention white-gloved sommeliers. Ever since Starbucks elevated the cup of coffee, "Q graders," the mandarins of the Arabica bean, have achieved similar gravitas. Craft beer has its cicerones.

What's happening: Now, a still-tiny phalanx of fancy chocolate companies, most based in the U.S., think they are on the brink of the same sort of coming of age. Their product has not yet reached the zenith of niche dining — a fancy appellation to single out its best experts. But exotically sourced chocolate may be the new thing in haut cool.