The UP and Coming Trend, Part 1

Many of us in America are facing up to obesity because of a lack of exercise and the fact that the U.S. is becoming a fast-food nation.

But what kind of problem is obesity in our area?

In Part 1 of Kristina Kuestner’s series, ‘The UP and Coming Trend’, the statistics show just how this silent killer affects the U.P.

1 in 4 Michigan adults is overweight.

And with a recent study, research shows 1 in 3 children in the Marquette Area Public Schools are considered obese.

Donna Marlor is the weight management director at Marquette General Hospital.

She says the results are alarming.

And with that rise in obesity rates comes an increase in overall health concerns.

Paula Ackerman is a registered dietician with the U.P. Diabetes Outreach Network.

She says that not only is there concern that diabetes will become more common, but heart disease is likely to rise as well.

Health experts say it’s not even obesity itself that’s the real issue here.

They believe it’s the trend of unhealthy lifestyles.

With the recommended daily calorie intake for women at 1500 calories and 2000 for men to maintain a healthy weight, many of us don’t realize how easy it is to surpass those amounts.

Marlor says you can ring up 1200 of those calories with 3 slices of pizza.

Lack of physical activity is a main component to the problem as well.

It takes 2,000 calories a week to maintain weight in energy expenditure, and Marlor says many aren’t getting the recommended amount.

She says nearly 40% of us only get about 10 minutes’ worth of exercise per week, which is a very low activity level.

But Ackerman says with healthy eating habits and an increase in physical activity, the benefits can be dramatic and immediate.

Processed foods are one of the main concerns to maintaining a healthy lifestyle.

Many groups in the area realize that.

Tomorrow, in Part 2 of ‘The UP and Coming Trend, Kristina will look at some of those organizations that are trying to push for healthy eating alternatives that everyone in the U.P. can enjoy.