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Obesity: Facebook Says Talking About it is “Abusive”

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Obesity: Facebook Says Talking About it is “Abusive”

I saw an article this morning that I thought was worth sharing. Oddly, Facebook blocked my attempts to post the link, stating the content was “abusive.” So what was this abusive content?

It was an article on the investment website 24/7 Wall Street titled, “The Obesity Index: The Cost of Obesity by State.” It listed, state by state, the percentage of obese residents and the medical costs associated with same. The date for the report came from the Centers for Disease Control in a report titled “Vital Signs: Adult Obesity.”

According to the actual report:

  • 72 million American adults are obese
  • Their medical costs are $1,429 more per year than their non-obese peers
  • No state has an obesity rate less than 15%
  • The obesity rate is over 30% in 9 states

Colorado and Washington, DC have the lowest rates of obesity, under 20%. States with the highest rates include:

  • Oklahoma
  • Missouri
  • Arkansas
  • Louisiana
  • Mississippi
  • Alabama
  • Tennessee
  • Kentucky
  • West Virginia

Now, I’m no demographic expert, but it looks to me like those states have a high number of residents below the poverty level. Additionally, several of them have some serious environmental problems (mountain-top coal mining, for example, with the attendant contamination of streams, groundwater, and air).

Coincidence? I don’t think so.

Our obesity epidemic won’t be solved until Americans have access to healthy, undamaged foods in reasonable quantities and at reasonable prices. Yes, exercise is important, but all the workouts in the world won’t undo the damage you inflict on yourself when you consume damaged fats, chemicals, artificial ingredients, meat contaminated with hormones and antibiotics, and so on.

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  1. I think there’s something else going on here, as well. I think quality of life has an input. Those with a low quality of life (working long hours for low wages) are more likely to be overweight than those with reasonable working hours and reasonably high pay and benefits.

    This is one reason the French tend not to have many overweight individuals, while Americans and now British have so many.

    Being originally from Colorado, I think this analogy applies within the U.S. as well. I had friends in Colorado who moved there from other states often tell me that they thought the quality of life in Colorado was much higher than in most midwestern states where they had lived. It’s something to think about.

    Many Americans who are moving overseas as expats are trying to increase their quality of life in one way or another. This can only be a good thing for their health.

    • Hi Mary, so nice to see you here!

      You’re absolutely right, quality of life — especially stress levels — has a huge impact. When you’re constantly stressed, as so many Americans are, your adrenaline goes haywire and affects a group of other hormones negatively. The hormones most affected control your appetite and fat storage. . .

      Despite our wealth, we’re the only Western nation without affordable universal health care, and the only one without a mandated annual vacation. While Europeans enjoy 4-6 weeks of paid time off from work every year, Americans are completely at the mercy of their employers. Many who are allotted vacation days don’t dare take them for fear of losing their jobs. It’s really quite pathetic.

      I can’t help but wonder how long it will take for our society and our businesses to catch on to the fact that a healthy workforce is much cheaper to maintain than a sickly one. . .

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