Get the facts…

I was watching a TV program the other day and they were using stats to prove their point.  Now I know that you must always use your own research to prove or disprove stats because someone can get any survey and manipulate the interpretation of the numbers to side with your opinion.

But when you see research after research come up with the same conclusions, the stats do start to paint a clearer picture regardless of your bias.  It happened with the link of smoking to lung cancer and we are starting to see it before our very own eyes with the global warming argument.

So I decided to visit some websites, filter out good studies from wacko studies (Google is wonderful for getting some really off the wall stuff!) and share them with you. The sites visited and of which I pretty much copied and pasted some key items were:

www.cdc.gov

www.fitness.gov

www.ideafit.com

www.unm.edu

www.dailymail.co.uk

I broke down the gee whiz stats into three categories; Physical, Nutrition and Obesity.  Hope these stats will alarm many of you to start an exercise and nutrition routine and pass this on to your children since our bad behavior is starting to wear off on them…

Physical Activity

Less than 5% of adults participate in 30 minutes of physical activity each day;2 only one in three adults receive the recommended amount of physical activity each week.

One in three children are active every day.

One-third of high school students play video or computer games 3 or more hours on a school day.

Children spend more than 7 hours a day in front of a screen (TV, Laptop, Tablet, Smartphone, PC).

Only 6 states (Illinois, Hawaii, Massachusetts, Mississippi, New York and Vermont) require physical education in every grade, K-12.

More than 80% of adults do not meet the guidelines for both aerobic and muscle-strengthening activities.

Only about one in five homes have parks within a half-mile, and about the same number have a fitness or recreation center within that distance.

Americans living in the South are more likely to be less physically active than Americans living in the West, Northeast and Midwest regions of the country.

Exercise may help prolong your life: people who engage in physical activity for 7 hours per week have a 40 percent lower chance of dying early than people who are active for less than 30 minutes a week.

Exercise can reduce cardiovascular disease, hypertension, diabetes, colon/breast and lung cancers, osteoporosis, arthritis, stress, moods, anxiety, self-esteem.

 University of Bristol researchers found that employees who enjoyed a workout before going to work – or exercised during lunch breaks – were better equipped to handle whatever the day threw at them.

Nutrition

Typical American diets exceed the recommended intake levels or limits in four categories: calories from solid fats and added sugars; refined grains; sodium; and saturated fat.

About 90% of Americans eat more sodium than is recommended for a healthy diet.

US adults consume an average of 3,400 mg/day [of sodium], well above the current federal guideline of less than 2,300 mg daily.

Empty calories from added sugars and solid fats contribute to 40% of total daily calories for 2–18 year olds and half of these empty calories come from six sources: soda, fruit drinks, dairy desserts, grain desserts, pizza, and whole milk.

Obesity

Obesity is defined as anyone with a Body Mass Index (BMI) of greater than 30.  BMI is calculated as a ratio of height and weight.  One word of caution, athletes tend to carry much more muscle than the average person so they may sometimes have BMIs approaching 30 yet they may be very lean.  But if you are sedantary or do not exercise much, it is a good indicator of obesity.

A good website to calculate your BMI is here.

Overweight adolescents have a 70% chance of becoming overweight or obese adults.

Recent reports project that by 2030, half of all adults (115 million adults) in the United States will be obese.

Nearly 45% of children living in poverty are overweight or obese compared with 22% of children living in households with incomes four times the poverty level.

65% of the world’s population live in countries where overweight and obesity kills more people than underweight.

Since the 1970’s…

Prevalence of obesity for children ages 12 to 19 years – tripled

Early 1970s: 6%

2007-08: 18%

Percentage of obese adults – doubled

Early 1970s: 15%

2007-08: 34%

States with an adult obesity prevalence rate of more than 25%:

Early 1970s: Zero

2007-08: 32

I hope that some of these stats will get you off the couch, get you riding your bike more often with the family, have you make wiser food choices and becoming more active to achieve…Fit Forlife!

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