A recently published study predicted that the rate of diabetes in the US will double by 2034, while the rate of obesity will remain steady. Steady at one third of the adult population! The discrepancy takes into account the aging population and how more overweight Americans will become diabetic as they age. What does this mean for our country? It means a sicker, older population; and a trillion dollars in health care costs that we cannot afford as a country. Our only hope as a society is to start losing weight!
It has been estimated that while one third of the US adult population is obese (greater than 30 pounds over a healthy weight); almost 70% of the adult population is over weight (one to 29 pounds over a healthy weight). This means only 30% of the population is actually close to their ideal weight! Sadly our kids aren't faring much better. The obesity rate in children is around 20%. This isn't changing much either because of the habits of most kid's parents. Overweight adults have overweight kids. Like begets like.
So what can we do as a society to change this alarming trend? We need widespread lifestyle reform. We need to put the population not just on a quick fix diet, but on a life changing health regimen.
Let's face it. The US cannot afford to continue to allow the majority of the population to be so overweight! We spend most of our current health care dollars on chronic disease. Most of these diseases are caused by obesity and smoking. Think about what the US would look like if we lost weight and stopped smoking as a society?
I know we can come up with a plan to decrease the weight of the population. We have to! Our own overindulgence is killing us slowly but surely. Be part of the solution! Encourage better eating and exercise habits with your friends and families. Let's change America one family at a time. Remember that if we fail and this alarming trend continues, this will be the last generation that will have a life expectancy longer then their parents.