Stop the cycle of unhealthy habits during National Nutrition Month

Photo from Alabama Cooperative Extension

AUBURN UNIVERSITY, Ala.— A lack of proper nutrition and physical activity is a major problem in Alabama. In fact, it is recognized as the fourth greatest current health concern facing Alabamians.

Unfortunately, this lack of proper nutrition is not new among residents. The Alabama Department of Public Health says in 2011 about 50 percent of residents did not consume a single piece of fruit or glass of fruit juice daily. Also, more than 25 percent of residents consumed vegetables less than once each day. This long-term era of poor habits has led to an extremely unhealthy population. During National Nutrition Month, health experts encourage Alabamians to stop the cycle and develop healthier eating patterns.

Alabama Extension Recognizes National Nutrition Month

Alabama Cooperative Extension System human sciences regional agents, Helen Jones and Marilyn Agee-Carroll have partnered with other regional agents to highlight the importance of healthy lifestyles throughout the year.

Jones, a regional agent in Montgomery County, said the agents want to highlight the 2022 National Nutrition Month theme—A World of Flavors.

“Our team encourages everyone to make healthy food choices and increase physical activity that can benefit them for a lifetime,” Jones said. “We want to Celebrate a World of Flavors with the Academy Nutrition and Dietetics to help residents of Alabama embrace every culture around the table.”

The Academy encourages families to take time to read food labels, as well as trying foods from all of the food groups. Remember, trying new foods doesn’t have to be scary.

Agee-Carroll, a regional agent in Houston County, said National Nutrition Month was initiated in 1973 as National Nutrition Week. It later became a month-long observance in 1980 in response to growing interest.

“Each year National Nutrition Month spreads awareness and encourages people to understand the importance of nutrition and assume a healthy, viable lifestyle,” Agee-Carroll said.

Agents Highlight Important Topics

The Alabama Extension human sciences team continues to offer traditional education programming in their counties. However, they also provide resources for stakeholders to read online. Topics for these online resources include the following:

  • Reducing screen time
  • Losing weight
  • Eating healthy on a budget
  • Avoiding sugary beverages
  • Scaling back on unhealthy snacks
  • Celebrating a world of flavors

All of these topics are available by visiting the National Nutrition Month 2022 resources on the Alabama Extension website (

Live Well Alabama Offers More Resources

Alabama Extension at Auburn University Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program–Education (SNAP-Ed) supports National Nutrition Month throughout March by sharing social media content through its Live Well Alabama pages on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter and Pinterest. In addition, SNAP-Ed will write articles and provide education throughout Alabama, reinforcing many of the tenets behind the initiative.

Live Well Alabama highlights many key recommendations from the Dietary Guidelines for Americans ( for developing a healthy eating pattern. The guidelines include the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables, protein, grains and dairy.

Additionally, Live Well Alabama works in conjunction with MyPlate ( through the USDA and the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics to highlight National Nutrition Month.