According to a Kentucky Health Issues Poll, only 20 percent of residents in eastern Kentucky eat the recommended daily amount of fruits and vegetables.
Ben Chandler heads the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky, and says access to fresh produce is often a barrier in that region of the state.
“Eastern Kentucky had the worst access for being able to get good foods,” Chandler said. “But by and large, the majority in Kentucky, a fairly healthy majority, say it’s easy for them to purchase healthy foods.”
Federal guidelines advise that at least half of each meal include fruits and vegetables.
Some counties in Eastern Kentucky have an obesity rate as high as 46 percent.
The Kentucky Health Issues Poll also shows only two in 10 residents in western Kentucky saying they eat the right amount of fruits and vegetables.
While access to nutritious foods is important, so is physical activity.
The poll shows eastern Kentuckian residents rated the condition of their sidewalks and safety of their neighborhoods for walking or biking at a lower rate than the rest of the state.