Archived Story

Keep healthy lessons going at home, too

Published 12:06am Tuesday, July 23, 2013

Call us cynical, but government seems to rarely execute its plans efficiently. It’s simply the nature of the beast.

The mere mention of the term “government program” will conjure up images of slow, lumbering and even inept work.

But recently we saw clear evidence that a change made by the 2007 Mississippi Legislature seemed to work well.

The Mississippi Healthy Students Act aimed at providing school children with healthier meals as well as getting them off their rear ends and exercising more.

Many Mississippians scoffed at the state’s suggestion that districts ditch deep-fat fryers from school cafeteria kitchens.

How on earth could our youth survive without the Southern staple?

Well, flash forward seven years and it turns out those young Mississippians turned out pretty well — although fortunately there are less pounds of them.

A study of more than 4,000 students determined the amount of students who are considered obese or overweight fell by more than 13 percent.

That’s a pretty impressive progress in just a few short years.

Unfortunately, despite the improvement, approximately two-thirds of our children still weigh more than is healthy.

Healthier foods are helping the state’s juvenile obesity problem, but schools only can do so much.

Even good government programs cannot legislate good parenting, but family peer pressure can. It’s selfish and unfair of all of us adults to sit by and allow our youth to eat what they want, when they want and become unhealthy — just because it tastes good.

The students are learning the right way to do things in school, let’s keep the lessons going at home, even if it means changing the way we eat, too.