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Viva Health Campaign Targets Obesity, Diabetes

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Wendy Rigby
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Texas Public Radio
The Viva Health campaign features a salad-sized plate with portions built in. Nutritionists say fruits and vegetables should take up half of the space.

Fighting obesity may have something to do with the size of your dinner plate. San Antonio’s Metropolitan Health District launched a new campaign today targeting weight problems and diabetes.

The facts are sobering. Two-thirds of San Antonians are overweight or obese. One is seven has been told by a doctor they are diabetic.

  

Metro Health’s director, Colleen Bridger, Ph.D., says a new approach to nutrition education is needed.

"Viva Health gives us the tools we need to continue addressing the biggest public health threats of this generation: obesity and type two diabetes," Bridger noted.

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Credit Wendy Rigby / Texas Public Radio
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Texas Public Radio
The San Antonio Metropolitan Health District launched Viva Health in March because it is National Nutrition Month.

  

Viva Health emphasizes three simple messages. The plate you eat off of should be no bigger than a salad plate. Half of that plate should be filled with fruits and vegetables. And drink lots of water, not juice, sodas or teas loaded with sugar.

Bridger says these are foundational habits. "While there are many contributing factors to chronic disease, how we eat is a key issue," she added.

The Viva Health message will be spread by community partners, even some faith-based groups like churches.

San Antonio Mayor Ivy Taylor calls places of worship a natural fit for health education. "I think that’s a perfect opportunity because if you believe that your body is God’s temple then you shouldn’t be putting any junk into it," Taylor said.

The new campaign’s tagline is 'Eat Well, Feel Great.' Look for Viva Health messaging on the web, in community cooking classes and even at your doctor’s office.