Nutrition students host educational programs

Calvina LieBig/The News
Calvina LieBig/The News

Calvina LieBig/The News

On Wednesday, several nutrition and dietetics majors began a three-week-long program called MOVE Toward a Healthier You.

“We are not running a marathon or cutting out large amounts of food but our goal is to make small changes to maintain a healthy lifestyle,” Meredith Freeland, senior from Benton, Ky., said.

This program was nationally initiated by the Veterans Administration Medical Center in Marion, Ill and has been altered to cater the local area. Murray State is collaborating with the VA Medical Center and groups of students from the College of Health Science and Human Services to teach students and members of the Wellness Center about several objectives.

The goal is to give advice and tips on the psychology of eating healthy, according to Freeland. This includes advice on grabbing quick snacks, doing easy at-home exercises, eating better at restaurants, how sleep effects your weight and to give weight-management tips. According to Cathy Ludwig-Bell, from Benton, Ill., the VA knows that more then 72% of the veteran population is obese or overweight and with the increase in weight comes several other health problems that can be avoided by simple lifestyle changes.

She says their initial goal at the VA Medical Center is to target the veteran’s to increase their knowledge about healthy foods and physical activities and to promote making small lifestyle choices to help maintain a healthy weight. The programs offered in Murray are run by students to reach a younger group of participants and make it easily accessible for students on campus. Freeland said anyone can participate.

On Wednesday, they focused on being aware of the different types of food and taking a whole foods approach. In the next weeks, they will continue to focus on benefits of physical activity and also managing hunger and fullness.

“Having gone through the first class, I think by going through this program, a student can better make choices, lose weight and overall just feel better,” said Kristen Carper, alumni from Murray, Ky.“I would encourage students to come because it can really help someone just to realize the food they are putting in their body.”

There are three groups of students teaching these programs, two on campus and one at the American Legion off campus. MOVE Toward a Healthier You is 4:30 p.m. every Wednesday and Friday at the Wellness Center, Thursday’s at 7 p.m. in room 204 at Oakley Applied Science and at 4:30 p.m. on Thursday’s at the American Legion. For the Wellness Center programs, only members of the Wellness Center including students are allowed to attend.

Story by Kelsey Randolph, Staff writer.