Michigan Launches “MI Healthier Tomorrow” Campaign to Fight Obesity

By Natasha Robinson, MPCA Communications Specialist

The state is offering Michigan residents a chance to shed some weight with some added motivation at their fingertips.

Residents who sign up for the MI Healthier Tomorrow campaign will pledge to lose 10 percent of their body weight and can opt to receive texts and/or emails with motivational health messages, reminders, tips, and recipes to help them reach their goals, according to the Michigan Department of Community Health (MDCH). MDCH says about 800,000 children and 5 million adults in Michigan have a weight problem, and obesity is on the rise here. Residents who take a pledge to shed 10 percent of their body weight will receive a free “Getting Started” kit that will include information and coupons.

“Out of all of the messages we explored, the theme that focused on the very serious, very real consequences of obesity was the one that consistently resonated with people,” said James K. Haveman, MDCH director. “We know we need to take action now to help Michiganders create a healthier tomorrow. This campaign will not only raise awareness, it will also provide people with the tools necessary to make real change.”

MDCH says that a 10 percent weight loss for those who are overweight can improve blood pressure, lower cholesterol, improve breathing and sleep, and improve mood, among other benefits. The state is launching the ad campaign with a number of partners across the state. Michigan Primary Care Association supports this campaign, as it is in line with the organization’s vision to build a healthy society.

MDCH said that in 2008, Michigan spent an estimated $3.1 billion on obesity related medical costs. If the current trend continues, it’s estimated that by 2018 Michigan will spend $12.5 billion on obesity related medical costs. Additionally, it’s estimated that by reducing obesity by 10 percent, Michigan health care costs could decrease by roughly $357 million.

Michigan Health Centers provide quality, comprehensive, affordable primary and preventive care to more than 600,000 people at over 220 delivery sites across the state. Their doors are open to all, regardless of insurance status or income level, and their services range from medical care, to dental care, to behavioral health care, to pharmacy services, and beyond.

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