Move It: Obesity Study - | Lufkin and Nacogdoches, Texas

07/02/07 - Nacogdoches

Move It: Obesity Study

by Donna McCollum

Without reading any study you can clearly see that obesity is on the rise.   "Go anywhere outside and count 10 people and you'll see 10 people that look visibly overweight, and we're not talking 5 pounds or 10 pounds, but a true weight issue," said Dawnella Rust, health sciences professor at SFA.  

In 2005, there were nearly 3 million more obese adults in Texas than in 1990. The share of overweight adults is above the national average. And how did it happen?    "The consequence of not being physically active and watching your nutrition is obesity," said Rust.

Another serious consequence is the cost of obesity. Controller Susan Combs set out to find out exactly how much. In a previously held press conference combs said,  "Obesity today cost Texas businesses an estimated 3 billion dollars, and that was two years ago, and it could reach 15.8 billion each year in 2025 from direct and indirect costs."   Rust says Combs' study adds credibility to what wellness advocates have been saying for years.  "This is not another health person saying this is a health problem, it's an epidemic. This is a person that deal in monies and dollars."

The bottom figure includes the cost of health care, absenteeism, and all those chronic illnesses associated with obesity. And let's not forget decreased productivity.  Health promotion people call it "presenteeism." You may know it well. It's those days at the office when you're body just doesn't want to function. You show up to work, but you don't get much accomplished. This is a disservice to you and your employer.    

"Find ways to move and just enjoy movement,"  advises Rust.

Move It Monday is brought to you by Memorial Health System of East Texas.

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