Louisiana has the highest rates of adult obesity in the United States at 36.2%, which can be partly attributed to the increase in snacking. What we eat and drink impacts our health, but we tend to eat what is easily available.
Did you know that sugary drinks along with candy, chips and sweet-baked goods represent 80% of the products available in food vending machines? This is taking a toll on our health.
According to a study released earlier this year, drinking sugary beverages everyday was associated with an increase in visceral fat, the kind that wraps around a number of important internal organs such as the liver, pancreas and intestines. Visceral fat affects how our hormones function and is thought to play a larger role in insulin resistance – which may boost Type 2 diabetes and heart disease risk.
The American Heart Association advocates for healthier food choices on public property. By making healthy food and beverages available in public places, children and families can eat healthy and decrease their risk for heart disease and diabetes. Together, we can help to change social norms and create healthier food and beverage environments.