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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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News

A woman reaches for a plant on an outdoor shelving unit.
Filed Under: Family, Coronavirus March 25, 2020

Mississippi State University Extension experts join the chorus of voices urging all people to practice social distancing during the COVID-19 pandemic, saying this is crucial for older adults.

A bowl of various fruits
Filed Under: Food and Health, Food, Coronavirus March 25, 2020

RAYMOND, Miss. – As people reduce trips to the grocery store to help slow the spread of the new coronavirus, older adults should pay special attention to what they put in their pantries. 

“As we age, we don’t need as many calories, but we still need the same amount of nutrients or more of certain nutrients,” said Qula Madkin, an Extension instructor of nutrition in the MSU Department of Food Science, Nutrition and Health Promotion. “Maintaining a nutritious diet helps our body systems work properly, including our immune system.”

A child uses a colored pencil to write on a sheet of paper.
Filed Under: Family, Family Dynamics, Coronavirus March 20, 2020

COVID-19 turned millions of families into homeschoolers who suddenly must decide how to structure learning for their students.

A close-up of a dish of Quick Taco-Mac.
Filed Under: Food, Food Safety, Coronavirus, Nutrition March 19, 2020

As cases of COVID-19 grow around the country, many families are practicing social distancing to protect themselves and others.

This likely means people will be making fewer trips to the grocery store, cooking at home and using their freezers.

Filed Under: Animal Health, Coronavirus March 19, 2020

STARKVILLE, Miss. -- Pets and other domestic animals are not considered at risk for contracting COVID-19, and the Mississippi State University College of Veterinary Medicine recommends that animal owners consult the American Veterinary Medical Association to get the facts.

Dr. Kent Hoblet, dean of the college, encouraged animal owners to consider AVMA guidelines as their primary resource on vaccines and animal illnesses related to COVID-19 and refrain from sharing misinformation circulating through social media and other unofficial sources.

Success Stories

A woman wearing a blue collared jacket stands in the fruit aisle of a grocery store.
Peanuts, Irrigation, Equine, Equine Assisted Therapy Programs, The PROMISE Initiative, Nutrition, EFNEP
Volume 5 Number 2

In this "What's New in Extension," Extension agents implement better safety standards, train to deliver Mental Health First Aid, and receive national recognition. Also, new irrigation and specialists join the Extension family.

A close up shot of the gears and bottom of a fluorescent green bike parked in a parking lot.
Health and Wellness, Food and Health, Health
Volume 5 Number 1

Start small, but start today. That’s what Scott Stokes was thinking last year when he brought out his bicycle after a 12-year hiatus and started riding again. A new Mississippi State University Extension Service program encouraged him to get back on track. (Photo by Kevin Hudson)

The silhouettes of two cyclists are seen in front of a blue and yellow sunrise that reflects on a lake below.
Health and Wellness, Food and Health, Health
Volume 5 Number 1

Winston 100 Wellness on Wheels cyclists ride through the Noxubee Wildlife Refuge as the sun rises over a cool fall 2018 morning.

A woman wearing a white visor, maroon shirt, jeans, and boots marks a clipboard as five cows and three calves rest under a tree.
About Extension, Beef, Marketing and Business Planning, Rural Development, Food, Food Safety, Health, Nutrition, Rural Health
Volume 4 Number 3

See what's new in Extension: Gather for First Extension Beef-Production Workshop, the Food Factor Goes Digital, Extension Professionals Share Expertise, and Extension Offers New HappyHealthy Program. 

Watch

Get Active May 14, 2017
The Food Factor

Get Active

Sunday, March 25, 2018 - 2:00pm
Daily Calorie Intake January 28, 2018
The Food Factor

Daily Calorie Intake

Sunday, January 28, 2018 - 7:00am
Food Factor Fitness Goal Setting January 7, 2018
The Food Factor

Food Factor Fitness Goal Setting

Monday, January 8, 2018 - 10:15am
DeRegos Bakery September 17, 2017
The Food Factor

DeRegos Bakery

Sunday, September 17, 2017 - 1:00am
The Perfect Boiled Egg September 10, 2017
The Food Factor

The Perfect Boiled Egg

Sunday, September 10, 2017 - 1:00am

Listen

Friday, January 24, 2020 - 5:45am
Friday, January 17, 2020 - 5:45am
Wednesday, December 25, 2019 - 7:00am
Wednesday, December 18, 2019 - 7:00am
Tuesday, December 17, 2019 - 7:00am

Select Your County Office

Your Extension Experts

Portrait of Dr. David Buys
Assistant Professor
State Health Specialist