Often times when I blog, I am conservative in my writing and the ways that I express my beliefs as to try to appeal to the majority of my readers. Don’t get me wrong – all of my writing comes from the heart and stems from a source of inspiration. All of it is truth and something that I will keep for the future; either for my book that I plan to write someday or for Jordan and Kendall to read as they grow up. However, there are certain positions that I stand sternly for and it is when these points arise, that my conservativeness lessens drastically.
As I was eating lunch today, I turned on the news quickly to hear what was going on with the voting in NC. There was a brief report that came on about America’s health and our obesity crisis. Being that I never watch the news in the middle of the day, I chuckled to myself, thinking how appropriate it was that this news piece displayed RIGHT when I turned on the TV. A coincidence?!? Um, don’t think so.
Most of the details the newscaster was reporting on were facts that I am already aware of because I read about them daily; yet they still make my jaw drop because they are so completely outrageous!! Here are a few:
*The current US population is 313 million people
*The obesity epidemic may be slowing, but the number of obese adults is likely to keep going up.
*Currently, over a third of U.S. adults are obese. By 2030, 42 percent will be!!
*Severe obesity will double by 2030, when 11 percent of adults will be nearly 100 pounds overweight or more (research led by Duke University).
*While being overweight increases anyone’s risk of diabetes, heart disease and a host of other ailments, the severely obese are most at risk — and the most expensive to treat. Conservative estimates suggest obesity-related problems account for at least 9 percent of the nation’s yearly health spending, or $150 billion a year
*The new forecast suggests 32 million more people could be obese in 2030 — adding $550 billion in health spending over that time span.
And here is where my conservativeness flies out the window!!
Those numbers are astronomical!! Imagine if the majority of Americans made the choice not to order the Big Mac and large fries (very doable, by the way); made the choice to exercise 30 minutes a day 5 days a week (again, doable); made the choice to drink water instead of coke; made the choice to go bike riding with their kids instead of playing video games; made the choice……What would our world look like then? It would be interesting to visualize this in my crystal ball and see what our health care costs would be if this were the case in America today.
Here is another thought – why in the world should MY family have to pay for the astounding amount that we pay for health care? Every time I hear statistics like this, a voice in my head whispers “and I have to pay for your health care.” As selfish as it may sound, I am more worried about the world that our kids and their children will grow up in.
Mark Bittman from the New York Times offers this example – Type 2 diabetes is projected to cost us $500 billion a year come 2020, when half of all Americans will have diabetes or pre-diabetes. Need I remind you that Type 2 diabetes is virtually entirely preventable? Ten billion dollars invested now might save a couple of hundred billion annually 10 years from now.
Precisely. Thanks, Mark for sharing that tidbit – Type 2 diabetes is PREVENTABLE if you choose to eat a healthy diet and exercise. This is a choice. You have heard me say it before; you either do it or you don’t. But poor choices added up over time eventually lead to disaster….and our country is in disaster mode.
Here is my point. I love what I do. I love helping people learn how to eat healthy and what to do for exercise. I love teaching people how to cook various meals and the value of nutritive foods. I love experiencing when it clicks with someone, that a healthy lifestyle is one of vibrancy and vitality and a much better way to live.
Lose the excuses and the laziness. Step outside your comfort zone, especially if that comfort zone happens to be a box of Dunkin Donuts on Saturday morning. Try the fresh veggie omelet. Make the correct choice. Be a good role model. Live life to it’s fullest.