[to top of second column]
The epidemic is also high on the White House agenda. President Barack Obama has pushed to make obesity prevention part of health care reform. Overhaul measures pending in Congress include encouraging employer-based wellness programs and requiring large restaurant chains to list calories. And Michelle Obama on Wednesday said fighting childhood obesity will be a top priority this coming year.
In a round-table conversation with reporters about her first year in office and upcoming goals, Mrs. Obama said the new CDC reports suggest a generation of children will be destined for increased rates of heart disease, high blood pressure and strokes "if we don't get a handle on this issue."
"We have a chance to change the fate of the next generation if we get on it," she said.
People like Darrell Pender are paying attention.
Obesity "is constantly in the news," said Pender, a 42-year-old New York City computer technician who decided to get serious about fighting fat after being diagnosed with diabetes three years ago.
Pender was tempted by a TV ad for obesity surgery, but chose a less drastic option -- a nutrition support group that he credits with helping him make healthier food choices. So far, he's lost 50 pounds over several months. At 350 pounds, he's still very obese, but his diabetes is under control and he feels healthier.
Karen Congro, Pender's nutritionist at the Brooklyn Hospital Center, said obese patients in recent years seem more willing to try lifestyle changes rather than quick fixes doomed to fail.
Fifteen years ago, "I would have said this seems almost hopeless. Patients would say, 'I had an overweight uncle who lived to 99,'" Congro said. "Now I almost never hear that."
On the Net:
Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.
< Recent articles
Back to top
News | Sports | Business | Rural Review | Teaching & Learning | Home and Family | Tourism | Obituaries
Law & Courts |
Spiritual Life |
Health & Fitness |
Calendar | Letters to the Editor