When UCLA public health researchers went looking for ways to increase physical activity in some of the nation’s inner-city, minority neighborhoods, they only had to look inside those neighborhoods to find answers: Younger African-American people liked to dance to hip-hop. In Latino neighborhoods, salsa was the music of choice. And in some Appalachian communities, fancy footwork referred to as “talking dance” got people up and moving.
From Hip-Hop to Salsa: Battling Obesity Grassroots Style
Talking with Jeffrey Levi of the Trust for America’s Health (Interview)
Philadelphia Inquirer “The Public’s Health”, Janet Golden, 11/15/2012
As the most recent “F as in Fat,” released in September 2012 explained “The number of obese adults, along with related disease rates and health care costs, are on course to increase dramatically in every state in the country over the next 20 years.” Obesity is linked to type-2 diabetes, coronary heart disease and stroke, hypertension, arthritis and some cancers. So then why are we failing to curb rising obesity rates? I put these and other public health questions to Jeffrey Levi, Ph.D., Executive Director of the Trust for America’s Health
Report: States’ Loopholes Detracting From Effectiveness of Phys. Ed.
Education Week “Schooled in Sports”, Bryan Toporek, 11/13/2012
Of the 50 states and the District of Columbia, 38 states require schools to provide students with physical education in elementary, middle/junior high, and high school, according to a report released Tuesday by the National Association for Sport and Physical Education (NASPE) and the American Heart Association. However, a majority of those states allow exemptions, waivers, and/or substitutions that allow students to satisfy the physical education requirement in alternative ways, which “reduce[s] the effectiveness of the mandate,” according to the report.
U.S. Diabetes Rates Soaring: CDC
HealthDay, Steven Reinberg, 11/15/2012
A stunning new federal report reveals just how bad the obesity-linked type 2 diabetes epidemic in the United States has become, with rates of the often-preventable disease hitting record highs. Some of the statistics are staggering: While in 1995 only three states, the District of Columbia and Puerto Rico had diabetes prevalence rates of 6 percent or more, by 2010 diabetes rates in all 50 states had reached that level.
New Partnership Aims to Curb Childhood Obesity by 2015
Education Week, Bryan Toporek, 11/16/2012
A new collaborative effort announced Thursday between the American Heart Association (AHA) and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF) aims to turn around the nation’s childhood-obesity epidemic within the next three years. Together, the two organizations will focus on six major policy areas, based on research suggesting what’s most effective in terms of combating childhood obesity.
The Last Course: What Will It Take to Make The World Less Round? (Editorial)
The Economist, 12/15/2012
The unfortunate truth is that no single policy will bring down obesity rates on its own. Societies got fat for a variety of reasons, and individuals, companies and governments must come to grips with all of them to reverse the process.
In-Shape Students Outscore Obese Peers Academically, Study Finds
Education Week, Bryan Toporek, 12/07/2012
Middle school students in prime physical shape outperform their overweight and obese peers both on tests and grades, according to new research from Michigan State University.
Salty Diets Lead to Obesity
WebMD Health News, Rita Rubin, 12/10/2012
Limiting children’s salt intake could be one way to reduce childhood obesity, new research suggests. The study of more than 4,200 Australian children 2 to 16 years old found that those who ate more salt also drank more fluids, particularly sugar-sweetened beverages — namely soda, fruit drinks, flavored mineral waters, and sports and energy drinks.