For Healthy Communities, Knowledge Isn’t Enough

October 20, 2020

Healthy Outreach

LSU AgCenter extension agents are on the ground in every Louisiana parish inviting residents to decide for themselves how to best increase access to healthy food and physical activity where they live—because knowing what’s good for you isn’t enough. Through the university-led Healthy Communities initiative, residents, along with local organizations, businesses, and leadership, identify assets (such as a nice park) and obstacles (no crosswalks to the nice park) and work together to create change.

Map of current initiatives

Healthy Communities, managed by LSU AgCenter, is an umbrella for several federally funded programs, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s High Obesity Program, or HOP (in six Louisiana parishes), the Expanded Food Nutrition Education Program, or EFNEP (in 10 Louisiana parishes), Flavors of Health (in 21 Louisiana parishes), and the SNAP-Ed program (in 39 Louisiana parishes).

– Elsa Hahne / LSU

“In some parishes in Louisiana, you might be surprised to learn that people do not have affordable access to healthy foods, such as fruit and vegetables. And if the healthy choice isn’t the easy choice, people will stay with their current behavior and not change.”

Denise Holston, assistant professor in the LSU School of Nutrition and Food Sciences