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State of Health in Mississippi

Concerns

Many of Mississippi’s health indicators are not good:

  • In 2014, Mississippi was ranked last in the nation in overall health
  • We are third in the nation in the percentage of adults with diabetes (2013)
  • We have the highest rate of heart disease deaths in the country (2013)

Factors contributing to poor health measures include:

  • 69% of Mississippi adults, and 40% of our children, are overweight or obese (2013/2011)
  • Mississippi's teen birth rate exceeds the U.S. rate by 60% (2013).  In 2012, 12.6% of all babies in Mississippi were born to teens
  • Highest percentage of high school students in the nation not meeting recommended physical activity levels (2013)

Mississippi's mortality rates for each of the 4 leading causes of death – heart disease, cancer, stroke, and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease – exceed the national averages

Opportunities

Lifestyle changes can affect your state of health.  Consider the following:

  • Physically active people have a lower risk of heart disease, high blood pressure, diabetes, obesity, and some forms of cancer
  • According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), tobacco use is the single largest contributor to preventable premature death in the United States
  • Poor diet is considered a leading contributor to such health concerns as diabetes, stroke, osteoporosis and obesity
  • It has been estimated that a third of premature deaths in the U.S. are due to poor nutrition and physical inactivity

How MSU Extension Service Can Help

  • Educate you and your organization on adopting healthy habits
  • Guide you to becoming a Master Wellness Volunteer helping others to live a healthier life
  • Help you organize a local group to focus on a community health priority

What You Can Do

Visit the following parts of our web site to help get you started on the path to a healthier life:

  • Publications and media – read or request a copy of material to help you get started
  • Master Wellness Volunteer – find out how you can learn to help others improve their health
  • Contact information – talk to your local MSU Extension Service agent for more information on programs and opportunities to enhance your health and that of your community

Recognize that even though today may be the day that you vow to begin living a healthier life, sometimes it takes a little help from your friends – Call your county office of MSU Extension Service; we care and we are there to help!

References:

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Publications

Publication Number: P3840
Publication Number: P3364
Publication Number: P3555
Publication Number: P3577

News

Woman on an exercise machine
Filed Under: Food, Health November 8, 2022

With all the upcoming holiday get-togethers around the corner, it can be easy to move less, sit more, and gain weight. This year, join our Walk with Extension 12 Days of FITMAS Challenge, which emphasizes moving more and eating more vegetables.

Woman tossing salad
Filed Under: Food, Nutrition and Wellness, Nutrition October 11, 2022

Flu season is upon us, and there’s no better time than now to kick your nutrition up a notch! One easy way to strengthen your immune system is by adding more fruits and vegetables to your diet. Good nutrition plays an important role in fighting off illnesses, including the flu.

Filed Under: The PROMISE Initiative October 7, 2022

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- A Mississippi State University Extension Service mental health campaign continues to receive national recognition, this time from the U.S. Department of Agriculture.

Filed Under: Food and Health, Health, Rural Health September 20, 2022

A Mississippi State University Extension Service specialist was recently reelected to the National Board of Public Health Examiners board of directors. Initially elected in 2020, David Buys, Extension health specialist and associate professor in the MSU Department of Food Science, Nutrition and Health Promotion, will now serve a second two-year term.

fruit smoothies
Filed Under: Health and Wellness, Health September 12, 2022

Did you know that some key lifestyle changes can help decrease our risk of cognitive decline or poor brain health? Check out these five tips to begin loving your brain better.

Success Stories

A group of teens examining a plant with a teacher.
Community, Rural Development, Food and Health, Health, AIM for CHangE, Lawn and Garden, Flower Gardens, Youth Gardening
Volume 8 Number 3

When teachers and administrators at Leland School Park began taking steps to install a school garden in 2019, they had no idea they would get a first-of-its-kind outdoor classroom.

A smiling young girl wearing a green apron holding a measuring cup full of flour.
Health and Wellness, Food and Health, Health, Nutrition and Wellness
Volume 8 Number 3

Kendra McGregory, a Houston, Mississippi, fourth grader, attended the program for the first time in 2021.

Five young adults and two women wearing black aprons and face masks smile for a group photo in a kitchen.
Food and Health, Food, Health, Nutrition and Wellness
Volume 8 Number 2

At Winona Career and Technical Center, students studying culinary arts participated in the Eating Smart, Being Active program, delivered by the Mississippi State University Extension Service in the spring 2022 semester. 

A man gazes off to the left as the sun sets behind him and two cows look at him from the opposite side of the fence he is leaning on.
Agriculture, Health, The PROMISE Initiative, Rural Health
Volume 8 Number 1

Extension destigmatizes mental health issues, one conversation at a time

When Colby Hardin first started working at the Arkansas Department of Corrections dairy farm, he prepared as if going to war.

 

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Your Extension Experts

Portrait of Dr. David Buys
Associate Professor
State Health Specialist
Portrait of Mrs. Qula Madkin
Extension Instructor