Tuesday, 28 August 2007

Epidemic obesity hurting US health, economy -- report

It appears the US is facing a... heavyweight crisis.

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WASHINGTON -- Two-thirds of US adults and some 25 million children are obese or overweight, and the fatness of the land is harming Americans' health and threatening US competitiveness, a report published Monday showed.

"In the past year, obesity rates have continued to rise in 31 states. Eighty-five percent of Americans believe that obesity is an epidemic," the Trust for America's Health (TFAH) said in its fourth annual "F as in Fat" report.

The rate of adult obesity more than doubled in percentage terms in the past 25 years across the United States, growing from 15 percent in 1978-80 to 32 percent in 2003-04, the report said.

In the same period, childhood obesity increased more than three-fold.

Poor nutrition and physical inactivity were putting Americans at greater risk for developing diseases such as diabetes, heart disease and stroke, and even some forms of cancer.

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