We are what we eat. On the South Coast, we are experiencing a high rate of obesity, diabetes and high blood pressure. To help reverse some of these unhealthy trends, five local 'mom and pop' neighborhood markets will participate in a new program designed at getting customers to make healthier food and beverage choices.

Mass in Motion New Bedford with cooperation from Mayor Jon Mitchell will help launch the initiative, under the supervision of the Massachusetts Department of Public Health. Any grocer that would like to join in this healthy endeavor is encouraged to contact City Hall. Stores will be given marketing items, help in getting small business funding and services.

The program will launch with Mayor Jon Mitchell at noon, Monday, Feb. 24, from The Butcher Shop, 123 Dartmouth St., New Bedford. Other iconic local markets participating include, Giammalvo's Market, Amaral's Fish Market, Xavier's Market and DeMello's Market. The public is invited to attend.