Thursday, March 12, 2015
OKLAHOMA CITY – Governor Mary Fallin today signed an executive order extending a gubernatorial council promoting good health, saying that in addition to supporting physical activity the panel should emphasize the importance of a well-balanced diet.
Noting that Oklahoma ranks seventh-worst for obesity, the governor said the Governor’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition (previously the Governor’s Council on Physical Fitness and Sports) should explain the important role physical fitness and nutrition play in the health of Oklahomans.
Latest figures show 32.2 percent of Oklahomans are obese. The governor said she would like to reduce that to 29.7 percent by 2017. The Governor’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition could be a tremendous help in attaining that goal.
“Encouraging participation in athletics is a great way to promote a healthy lifestyle, and one that naturally resonates with many sports-loving Oklahomans,” said Fallin. “Physical activity and a well-balanced diet must be incorporated into our daily routines if we are to achieve a satisfying quality of life.”
Fallin noted that physical fitness is an economic issue as well as a quality of life issue. Improving the fitness and eating habits of Oklahomans will result in workers being more productive and healthier, which in many cases will diminish health expenses, she said.
“We do know that poor health outcomes are costing businesses and the state of Oklahoma literally billions of dollars every year in medical expenses and lost workforce productivity,” she said.
“Every Oklahoman can do better in taking personal responsibility for her or her health. Too often, many take their health for granted and neglect to take part in physical activities and take note of what they eat.”
The purpose of the Governor’s Council on Fitness, Sports and Nutrition is to encourage all Oklahomans to adopt a healthy lifestyle that incorporates physical activities, sports and good nutrition, both through educational outreach and by partnering with public, private, and non-profit programs that foster wellness initiatives.
“The action taken today by Governor Fallin is another strong step in encouraging Oklahomans to improve their health,” said Dr. Terry Cline, secretary of Health and Human Services. “By working together to confront the health challenges faced by our state, we can realize the goal of reducing obesity.”
The 12 members of the council are appointed by the governor.