Health-related New Year's resolutions are likely to be at the top of many lists, especially in Mississippi where health outcomes are often so poor. MPB's Ashley Norwood reports.
Mississippi consistently ranks among the most obese states. It also ranks high in its percentage of adults with diabetes, cancer and heart disease. It makes sense that weight loss would be a top resolution for many.
Josie Bidwell is a professor at the University of Mississippi Medical Center School of Nursing. She says she wants Mississippians to make measurable health goals this year.
"Pick an area that you want to work at. Is it smoking? Do you want to stop smoking? Is it your diet? Do you want to work on what you're eating? Is it how active you want to be? Work on that instead of this shotgun blast, I'm going to turn my health around this year," said Bidwell.
Bidwell says in addition to choosing a smaller plate, it's also important to think about what you're adding to it.
"We used to think calories in calories out. Now we know that's not necessarily the thing. It's the quality of the calories as well. But, calories do count. Portion control is our greatest friend in trying to clean up our diet and lose weight," said Bidwell.
Bidwell, who is also a fitness instructor, recommends increasing physical activity to support weight loss.
"I do recommend to folks, once you've gotten that thirty minutes a day five days a week, go ahead and add in muscle strength activity. The more lean muscle mass you put on, the more calories you burn in your normal aerobic activity," said Bidwell.
Mississippi has the second highest adult obesity rate in the nation, according to the 2017 state of obesity report.