Due to Mississippi’s high rates of obesity (almost 40% among adults in 2018) and poor childhood nutrition, the Center monitors state and federal nutrition policy, and has commissioned original ongoing research, and periodically convened stakeholders to develop policy solutions.  Our published work in the area includes reports or briefs summarizing:

Child and Youth Prevalence of Obesity Surveys (CAYPOS), which have documented child obesity and overweight rates regularly since 2007 and have been used to inform legislation and operational policy as well as to evaluate the impact of state and school-district level policy;

collaborative efforts with the Robert Woods Johnson Foundation and other state researchers to determine the impact of Mississippi’s Healthy Students Act;

and developments in the federal Farm Bill, which funds the Supplemental Nutrition and Assistance Program (formerly known as food stamps) as well as agricultural subsidies, and impacts the state by influencing local farmers’ decisions to forgo fruit and vegetable production in favor of raising other subsidized crops (a decision which means fewer local sources of fruits and vegetables across the state, particularly in poorer communities).


Copies of the issue briefs, chartbooks, and reports can be downloaded here. Printed copies of all documents are available by contacting the Center for Mississippi Health Policy at 601-709-2133 or by e-mail at

Issue Briefs: