‘Pick and Chews’ for better health

Healthwise: Pick and Chews

LUBBOCK, TX (KCBD) - Obesity has become an epidemic in this country. The latest numbers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicate that 1 in 5 young people are obese between the ages of 12 and 18.

That statistic is motivating some nursing students at the Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center to make a difference. Reid Moore is among a group of senior nursing students who launched a program called “Pick and Chews.” He says they are using that play on words to reach young people with a strong message about the importance of good nutrition.

He says it started when he did some volunteer work at a free clinic. He says, “I noticed there were so many kids who were behind on nutrition and already overweight. It’s sad that they never get a chance at good health because at such a young age, they’re already so far behind. And I felt the need that we can probably do something about it.”

Maura Mangan agreed. Together with other nursing seniors, they launched “Pick and Chews”, a program they are taking into Lubbock schools to reach kids at the earliest level. She says, “We’ve started to learn a lot of these kids don’t know the different between fruits and vegetables, even chips. We’re really hoping to educate them. So if they’re able to make a decision, choosing fruit over chips just one time, we’re hoping to make a difference.”

Reid explains they go into the school library for a 15 minute presentation and they try to make it fun for kids.

After all, the goal is for the kids to be inspired. So, they will in turn ask their parents to buy healthy foods at the grocery store. Ultimately, they are hoping that the program, “Pick and Chews” will have an impact on the whole family in choosing better, healthier foods at the grocery store and in restaurants.

Although Reid and Maura are graduating in the spring of 2019, they are staying involved to make sure this program continues among the many nursing students who follow them.

So, they are encouraging Lubbock schools to make arrangements for a “Pick and Chews” presentation.

If you would like to learn more, contact Reid Moore at reid.moore@ttuhsc.edu.

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