Today, Proud Americans; Tomorrow, a Nation of Fat Blind Amputees on Dialysis, Unless We Stop Diabesity NOW
Posted Apr 06 2011 6:05am
We Americans like our data. We like to see the stats and hear the credentials. We are even brand conscious about them, though not snobbish about those brands - we like our USA today polls as much as we like our National Institute of Health statistics.
....I see it in the latest President's Cancer Panel Report, which is a compendium of factoided statistics such as
· Approximately 41 percent of Americans will be diagnosed with cancer
· About 21 percent of Americans will die from cancer
· Cancer cost the nation $243.4 billion
Some are more elaborate (and more elaborately scary), such as
· People who receive multiple (medical imaging) scans or other tests that require radiation may accumulate doses equal to or exceeding that of Hiroshima atomic bomb survivors , and
· Substances banned more than 30 years ago remain ubiquitous in the environment because they break down very slowly, if at all
...I see it in websites like the Centers for Disease Control, which has a whole section called Data and Statistics. Its' true - click here and you'll find dry research reports, with very digestible synopses of the findings, such as "The prevalence of obesity in the United States continues to be high, exceeding 30% in most sex and age groups."
The rest of the study findings might be synopsized as follows:
"Americans women are fatter than Canadian women; men in the two countries are equally fat. Europeans are generally not as fat as Americans except for some of the Central and Eastern European countries” ...which was surprising given the recent study reported in the New York Times, " Spreading Fat Stigma Around the Globe" - you'd think with the great majority of us fat or obese, we'd cut each other some slack but that doesn't appear to be the case.
And as I run across more and more articles about obesity and Type 2 Diabetes and cancer and kidney failure and how this generation of children will have shorter lives than their parents for the first time in American in two centuries the relentless statistics I am peppered with, like info from the CDC:
An adult who has a BMI between 25 and 29.9 is considered overweight.
An adult who has a BMI of 30 or higher is considered obese.
and the National Institutes of Health:
Overweight and obesity result from an energy imbalance. This involves eating too many calories and not getting enough physical activity.
Body weight is the result of genes, metabolism, behavior, environment, culture, and socioeconomic status.
· There are ~2 million more people diagnosed w/ diabetes each year
· Another 70 million people are 'pre diabetic'.
· Adult blindness and amputations are significantly up
· Diabetes rates are high in children.
Our children will have shorter life spans than us, mostly because of diabetes, due to obesity.
The surgeon general calls obesity " The terror within" and urges us to think about the workforce implications of a generation of children that may well be the unhealthiest in history. Where will we get our soldiers and our sailors, our engineers and our workers? Our children are our future - but our children have no future, if we don't stop diabesity. We must leave them a better legacy that what they currently face.
Some weight loss surgerie s are effective at resolving Type 2 diabetes. Even NFL players are having these surgeries – one of them calls himself “The Lap BAND Man”.
I heard someone joke that we might become The United States of LAP BAND but I say, better that, than the "United States of Blind Crippled Heart- and- Kidney Diseased Diabetics on Dialysis Dying Prematurely While on Disability". What do you think?