Today I feel that I need to share the more serious side of what our nation as a whole is facing as our obesity rates rise. I do this not to scare, intimidate, or belittle. I share this with you in the hope that it gives you a sense of urgency, passion, and empowerment towards getting healthy as a community.
The truth is that each of us has the capability to affect healthy changes in our families, communities, work places, schools, dinner tables, peer groups, clubs, state, and nation. We are all responsible for impacting and making healthy changes.
These are the staggering highlights copied and pasted from an article posted in the New York Post. Feel free to click the link to read more. (I am not a fan of the title of the article. It is insensitive, but I felt I needed to sight my source.)
- “For the first time in our history, children may face a shorter life span than their parents because of the consequences of this epidemic,” said Pat Waniewski, director of the Health Department’s Bureau of Community Chronic Disease Prevention.
- She reports that — barring dramatic behavioral changes — “obesity is predicted to shorten life expectancy by two to five years by the year 2050.”
- Obesity also is expected to surpass smoking as the leading cause of deaths in New York, officials said.
- Obesity-related illnesses — such as diabetes, heart disease and asthma — swell health-care costs by $12 billion and take a big bite out of the treasury.
- State Comptroller Tom DiNapoli, who recently issued an analysis of the issue, said childhood obesity could increase health-care costs by “billions of dollars” as youths get older.
- About 40 percent of New York City public-school students age 6 to 12 are overweight or obese, as are 32 percent of kids in the rest of the state, Waniewski said in a presentation to minority-health advocates.
What do you think about these statistics? Leave a comment, or offer a suggestion on how we can all get involved. Share your stories!
Tara Arnold, RN
Mrs. Oregon 2013