OCEAN SPRINGS, MS (WLOX) - Students and faculty promoted healthy lifestyles at the Ocean Springs High School's 2nd annual Healthy Hounds event.
"I organized this program here to teach other people how to eat healthy. It is the answer," said Shirley Brazzle.
Brazzle speaks from experience. When her mother was diagnosed with dementia, she was tasked with taking care of her. The doctors gave her mother just six months to live.
"I just asked the home health nurse, what do I need to do to do to care for my mother? And she told me, I just need to feed her healthy foods," Brazzle said.
Unfortunately, Brazzle didn't follow that advice for herself until her high blood pressure became a red flag that it was time to make a change. When she did, she noticed a difference.
"My blood pressure went down, I started losing weight and I figured out that this is the way that you're supposed to eat. My mother lived for four years after that because I was feeding her healthy foods," she said.
She now dedicates her time to encouraging others to also choose a healthy lifestyle. On Saturday, she and Union Baptist Church set up this booth at the Ocean Springs High.
The school was recently designated as Mississippi's Healthiest School and awarded a $50,000 grant to continue funding activities like this.
"Trying to keep just a healthy environment around the school, so that students will make better choices," said Cicely Wallis, OSHS Health Council coordinator.
"I was drinking nothing but sweet tea and water for a long time, and now seeing how much sugar is in sweet tea, I'm going to try to get away from that unfortunately," said Jacob Sprosty.
Knowing that students are making moves to better their health is good news to Brazzle.
"It's like when you learn something you want to share it. So I wanted everybody to know that healthy food is the answer," she said.
The Healthy Hounds event kicked off with a fun run.
Community organizations and businesses donated food and resources for today's event.