One in six high school children in Mississippi are obese. We're working to change that.
Obesity among Mississippi students and children has historically been among the highest in the nation. Mississippi children eat less nutritious meals and get less physical activity today than in the past, and it's creating a future of chronic disease and shorter life.
Data from surveys of high school students show that:
- About 70% of high school students had fewer than 5 servings of fruits and vegetables a day.
- About 70% did not attend PE classes daily when they were in school.
- About 45% watch television 3 or more hours a day.
Obesity in Mississippi teens has fallen in recent years, significant progress in this difficult problem. And obesity among elementary school students has fallen by 13% over a ten-year span. Schools are changing their approach to nutrition and exercise, and parents are getting educated about healthy living for their children and themselves. We're still learning about the causes of obesity and how to address them, but we've also learned that eating right, getting active, and involving parents can lead to progress and a better future.
What You Can Do
- Get your kids eating right with 5 to 7 servings of fruits and vegetables a day. That's half the plate at every meal.
- Limit TV and computer time as much as possible, and encourage outdoor activity instead — even if it's just walking half an hour a day.
- Learn what you can do to improve nutrition for yourself and your family. Use these meal planning and shopping ideas, and our collection of low-calorie, low-cost recipes.
- Let your daycare know that you're interested in the best nutrition for your children. Tell them about the Farm-to-Preschool initiative that brings good food and nutrition awareness to kids.