Nutrition & Physical Activity

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Eating well and being active are important for lifelong health.
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Good nutrition and regular physical activity are a good fit for Wisconsin. Our state is known for inviting outdoor landscapes that are tailor-made for sports and recreation, surrounded by some of the richest farmland in the country.

Eating well and being active can help us avoid many chronic diseases as we age, including type 2 diabetes, cancer, stroke, heart disease and obesity. As children grow, they need healthy foods and physical activity at least five days a week to help them maintain a healthy weight.

These healthy habits can also contribute to our emotional well-being. Eating well and being active can increase physical and emotional balance—helping us sleep better, feel better, reduce anxiety and manage stress.

Our Goals

Our goal is to get Wisconsin eating healthier and moving more. That means increasing the number of fruits and vegetables we eat each day, encouraging breastfeeding and making physical activity a regular—even daily—habit for children and adults of all ages.

Increase consumption of 1+ vegetable per day by adults from 74% in 2013 to 78% in 2020.

2013 Data
2017 Data
2020 Goal

Reduce daily consumption of soda by students from 20% in 2013 to 15% in 2020.

2013 Data
2017 Data

Increase breastfeeding duration at six months from 54% in 2014 to 60% in 2020.

2014 Baseline
2015 Data
2020 Goal

Increase percentage of students physically active for a total of at least 60 minutes per day on five or more of the past seven days from 50% in 2013 to 55% in 2020.

2013 Baseline
2016 Data
2020 Goal

Increase percentage of adults physically active at least 150 minutes per week from 53% in 2013 to 58% in 2020.

2013 Baseline
2017 Data
2020 Goal

Increase consumption of 1+ fruit per day by adults from 62% in 2013 to 65% in 2020.

2013 Data
2017 Data
2020 Goal

Increase breastfeeding initiation from 80% in 2015 to 90% in 2020.

2015 Baseline
2016 Data
2020 Goal

What’s Being Done

People in our state are taking notice and making positive changes. Fifty-eight of 72 counties now say physical activity is a priority in their County Health Assessment Report. We’re creating breastfeeding-friendly communities. Programs such as Farm to School, the Got Dirt? Garden Initiative and the Healthier Wisconsin Worksite Initiative are getting the word out.

For more information on the Healthy Wisconsin Action Team’s strategies for increasing healthy food consumption and physical activity by 2020, download the Nutrition & Physical Activity report.

Community Story - Nutrition & Physical Activity
Kewaunee County: Promoting Nutrition and Physical Activity
In 2018, Kewaunee County formed a workgroup to address the county’s nutrition and physical activity needs.

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ACEs and Nutrition & Physical Activity

Our health isn’t determined by genetics alone. Our choices and experiences—especially the experiences we have in childhood—can have a powerful impact on our long-term health. Abuse, neglect and other Adverse Childhood Experiences (ACEs) are linked to poorer health such as obesity and other chronic diseases, and the more ACEs a person has, the higher that risk becomes.

It’s important to remember that ACEs may increase the odds of having health challenges, but they don’t guarantee poor health or risky behavior. Research shows that healthy eating and increasing physical activity are positive coping mechanisms that can help people who have experienced childhood trauma deal with life’s challenges and overcome adversity.

Learn more about ACEs