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  1. #1
    Sprockette wabbit's Avatar
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    10% of deaths in GA from Obesity

    I just read this. Truly frightening. Apparently the southern states have the highest obesity rates.

    ATLANTA (AP) -- Being overweight contributes to nearly one in 10 deaths in Georgia, a state health study found. Obesity has been climbing about 3 percent each year among Georgia adults and nearly 60 percent of adults were either overweight or obese in 2002, according to the study by the Georgia Division of Public Health.

    The study released this week also found that obesity is responsible for $2.1 billion in health care costs each year and about 6,700 Georgians die yearly from obesity-related health problems that include diabetes, high blood pressure, heart attacks and strokes.

    Health officials are trying to teach Georgia children healthy eating habits and to be more active. But about a third of the state's middle school students and more than a quarter of the high school students already are overweight or obese, the study found.

    ''We like getting them when they're young, they are at the formative stage and they're forming better habits,'' said Frances Cook, nutrition director for the health division. ''We probably have a better chance working with the youth than working with adults.''

    State health officials want more daily exercise in schools and to increase students' access to healthier food, Cook said.

    A study in February by the Healthcare Georgia Foundation found that 41 percent of Georgia adolescents do not get 20 minutes or more of physical activity three or more days each week as recommended. Less than a third of Georgia middle and high school students attend physical education classes daily.

    But children need at least an hour a day of exercise, said Catherine Davis, an assistant professor of pediatrics at the Medical College of Georgia.

    In addition, health officials need to work with parents to help combat childhood obesity, she said. The study found more than a quarter of Georgia children under 5 were overweight or obese.

    ''I think telling the children what not to do is not going to be as effective as working with the families,'' Davis said.
    You can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar. That's great...if you want to attract vermin.

  2. #2
    Senior Member
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    I live in the western tip of North Carolina. It's truly astonishing how fat some of my coworkers are. We employee about 1800 people. A safe estimate would put 75% overweight.

  3. #3
    Senior Member rule's Avatar
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    Yeah...Texas is pretty large too. Gastric bipass surgery is becoming a growth industry around these parts. I went on a big charity ride this morning. It restored my faith in humanity. Still found a few, err, great drafting partners though.

  4. #4
    Virtulized geek MsMittens's Avatar
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    Wow. Interesting. Is this due to a prevelance of fast food or a history of fried food in the cultural environment? combination of both? add on dependence on car/SUV?

  5. #5
    Name's Ash ...housewares Doctor Morbius's Avatar
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    This study must mainly be for the State of Georgia as I used to live in Atlanta and though people there were waifishly thin. Atlantan's were very concerned with their appearances and fat was not fashionable.

    The same isn't true of people here in Indianapolis. What a bunch of cows!
    I did not achieve this position in life by having some snot-nosed punk leave my cheese out in the wind. - Ed Rooney


    It's not that I'm lazy. I'm just highly motivated to RELAX!!

  6. #6
    Rides again HiYoSilver's Avatar
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    Careful you don't encourage the control freaks to fine overweight people the same way they fine cigarette smokers. Not all is food input and exercise. Look around, some ethic groups have short large people. This used to be a plus in times of food shortage. Especially about many of america's tribes. These genes are still at work today. For these people a 1,000 calorie diet will result in same body weight as 2,500 normal diet.

    Bottom line, use this for self motivation, but use carrot approach with non bikers.
    Hi 'o Silver away

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    Sprockette wabbit's Avatar
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    It's kind of interesting that in states with warm climates like GA, you'd think people would be outdoors all year round! Yet in NYC, people are thin because they walk everywhere even in crappy weather. I remember reading that Kentucky also has a very high death rate from obesity and heart disease.
    You can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar. That's great...if you want to attract vermin.

  8. #8
    Ride it, don't fondle it! Wheel Doctor's Avatar
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    I'm a northerner. NY.....I spent 25 years in the south. Lots of sugar used in cooking and lots of fat used for flavor. The high obesity rates nationwide have a lot of different sources. Not just fast food, fried food, sugar etc. Include lack of exercise, loss of emphasis on fitness in schools for other than the jocks. The prevlence of the automobile. The need to have one cause for everything seems to be the American way or just human nature, life is not that simple. Rural areas may have a higher rate but it may be due to the distances to get anything. In an agarian society that we were in the past we were much more active in the work environment. There are so many reasons why were so fat. Not just the few the media feeds us. Gastric Bypass is scary stuff and there are some really botched jobs out there. For some it can be a miracle but lately its the first alternative rather than the last. There is lots of obiesity everywhere. City and rural. The answer????

  9. #9
    Name's Ash ...housewares Doctor Morbius's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Wheel Doctor
    I'm a northerner. NY.....I spent 25 years in the south. Lots of sugar used in cooking and lots of fat used for flavor.
    I did notice when I lived in Atlanta that when you order an Iced Tea with a meal they usually brought a sweetened Iced Tea. And I mean sickly sweet too! Here in the Midwest when you order an Iced Tea you get just that ... an Iced Tea. Then you have packets of sweetener at your table or you ask a member of the wait staff.

    Gastric Bypass is scary stuff and there are some really botched jobs out there. For some it can be a miracle but lately its the first alternative rather than the last.
    It's first probably because it's a great revenue generator. Big bucks. Why bother with the small change?
    I did not achieve this position in life by having some snot-nosed punk leave my cheese out in the wind. - Ed Rooney


    It's not that I'm lazy. I'm just highly motivated to RELAX!!

  10. #10
    Sprockette wabbit's Avatar
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    Obviously exercise has a great impact on it, but I have also noticed that southern cooking means fried. I was in DC a few years ago, and I noticed that a lot of people were not only obese but had terrible eating habits. Everything seemed to be fried and greasy, people poured tons of sugar into coffee and tea, and opted for junk food wherever possible. Also, it was really hard to find healthy things to eat like fresh fruit except at the hotel dining room. I noticed that healthy thinges are hard to find or locate,but junk food is easily and readily available everywhere.

    One thing I did like was the biscuits at breakfast. It's a nice change from bread. It's a good thing the biscuits are tasty because the bagels are inedible. But i really liked the biscuits.
    You can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar. That's great...if you want to attract vermin.

  11. #11
    Senior Member Pedal Wench's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Doctor Morbius

    It's first probably because it's a great revenue generator. Big bucks. Why bother with the small change?
    I've never understood the concept behind gastric bypass. After the surgery, you have to control your diet, right? Well, if you can control your diet, then why couldn't you do it before surgery? When you hear about people going for the surgery, saying they've tried everything else to lose weight, you just know they haven't tried EVERYTHING. Have they taken up cycling and hauled themselves around for a couple hundred miles? Doubt it. And, after the bypass, they probably can't take in enough nutrients to even think about exercising - so they're stuck. Forever. That's why I'm so thrilled with Mikabike - he's out there, really doing something that's going to make a change in his life.

    (stepping off my soapbox in Atlanta...)

  12. #12
    Jr. High School Student shiftinjon's Avatar
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    Bikeforum members who will remain anonymous. At least they're exercising...

  13. #13
    Upgrading my engine DXchulo's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by 3cannondales
    I've never understood the concept behind gastric bypass. After the surgery, you have to control your diet, right? Well, if you can control your diet, then why couldn't you do it before surgery? When you hear about people going for the surgery, saying they've tried everything else to lose weight, you just know they haven't tried EVERYTHING. Have they taken up cycling and hauled themselves around for a couple hundred miles? Doubt it. And, after the bypass, they probably can't take in enough nutrients to even think about exercising - so they're stuck. Forever. That's why I'm so thrilled with Mikabike - he's out there, really doing something that's going to make a change in his life.

    (stepping off my soapbox in Atlanta...)
    I'm just talking out of my ass here (don't we all?), but a lot of obese people (and now I'm stereotyping to boot), for whatever reason, see their obesity as some sort of medical condition beyond their control. Many of them will never admit to eating too much and not exercising, but will blame slow metabolism and tell stories of the very few people out there who have thyroid conditions. If you listened to obese people you'd think thyroid conditions are as prevalent as can be, but in reality they're pretty rare. They see gastric bypass as a medical fix to their "disease" just like getting surgery can fix other problems that are actually impossible for people to fix on their own.

    Anyway, I'm not sure about the controlled diets, but I do know that their stomach has been made so small that they'll start to feel sick after eating some pretty small amounts of food. So they don't all of the sudden have willpower. Instead, they have a painful negative consequence to eating even a normal amount of food. Even if they eat through the pain (why would you?) they would either throw up (more likely) or bust their staples open (not so likely, and sounds even more painful).

    Here's some more talking out of my ass: I bet if you look at the diets of people who've had this surgery you'll see that they still don't eat the most nutritious, balanced diets. They're just unable to eat as much as they used to. So in reality they aren't models of determination and discipline even after the surgery.

    What sucks is that people have started looking at this as some sort of quick fix when it really should be a last resort.

  14. #14
    Sprockette wabbit's Avatar
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    Actually, thyroid conditions are not rare, they are very common. In fact, I remember reading that about 80 million americans have thyroid conditions but many don't know this. The reason I was reading this is because I have a thyroid condition. The symptoms are very subtle and often people don't know they have it and walk around with it for years. That was the case with me; I have an underactive thyroid and had it for years. And yes, it does slow down your metabolism, and you do gain weight. That's how I noticed something was off because I'd always had a speedy metabolism and began gaining weight for no reason, in other words, I hadn't been eating more or sitting around. However, the fact is that 15 pounds is about normal; which is what I gained, and since I was always quite slim, 15 lbs is a lot for me. Thyroid making you obese is a myth. But many people aren't diagnosed until middle age, and if you're already overweight, out of shape, never exercise and eat junk, a slowed down metabolism doesn't help. And if you're in such bad shape, you probably don't notice many of the symptoms of thyroid like muscle cramps, heart palpitations, feeling tired,since you're probably used to feeling like crap. They gain weight because of bad habits but it's harder to lose when you have a slowed down metabolism.But once you go on medication,you will probably start to lose the weight. As for me, I lost the 15 lbs because I realized that cycling a lot helped my metabolism.

    I find it interesting though that people who get the surgery finally change their habits after ward because their stomach is smaller. SO it shows you that the main reason for their gaining weight is eating too much; why can't they change their habits before having such huge major surgery? Everyone wants the quick fix and no one wants to get up off the couch. I know it's hard to make changes, and maybe the surgery motivates you, but why do people wait until it's so bad that they have to do such drastic stuff? Last year my father was in the hospital, and his roommate was this guy who'd had thatsurgery. He was really gross and obese, and it became pretty evident that the reason he got that way was from sitting in the house in front of the computer and playing Dungeons and Dragons all day.
    You can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar. That's great...if you want to attract vermin.

  15. #15
    SSP
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    Quote Originally Posted by HiYoSilver
    Careful you don't encourage the control freaks to fine overweight people the same way they fine cigarette smokers. Not all is food input and exercise. Look around, some ethic groups have short large people. This used to be a plus in times of food shortage. Especially about many of america's tribes. These genes are still at work today. For these people a 1,000 calorie diet will result in same body weight as 2,500 normal diet.
    I really doubt that's true. While metabolism does vary from person to person, it doesn't vary nearly that much. If you have links to any studies showing otherwise, please post them.

    AFAIK, native Americans from 100 years ago were not obese, and did not suffer extraordinary levels of diabetes like they do today. Although their genetics may predispose them, it's modern lifestyle choices that are the real source of the problem.

    And, who is "fining" cigarette smokers??
    CycliStats.com - Software for Cyclists
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  16. #16
    Al noisebeam's Avatar
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    There is an interesting, thought provoking article in the latest issue of Scientific American about obsesity and mortality.

    http://www.sciam.com/article.cfm?cha...1583414B7F0000

    I do think regarless of mortality rates, that it is better and healthier to be and live amoung a healthy active population. But I also don't like the frequent attitude I see here in the bike forums of ripping on overweight people and their lifestyles - to me that is not constructive.

    Al

  17. #17
    Senior Member kf5nd's Avatar
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    and they criticize us and say cycling is dangerous... NOT cycling is MORE dangerous!
    Peter Wang, LCI
    Houston, TX USA

  18. #18
    ney
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    I've been reading these forums for the past couple of weeks and thought I would post my first reply on this thread.

    I'm 31 years old and weigh 325 -heaviest I've ever been. I have tried all diets; structured diets like Jenny Craig; book diets like South Beach, Atkins, the Zone; fad diets; and medication (Phen-Fen, then the other Fen when one turned out to be dangerous, Meridia, Glucophage...). My doctor tested for thyroid problems and I am fine.

    I guess I have tried everything but never long enough and that is what I find to be the key. It's all about committing to something long enough to see results (healthy eating and exercise. The problem I found with me is that it was always too easy to not take responsibility and blame my weight gain on something (genes, fad diets, bad knees so I can't exercise...).

    I went to a nutritionist the other day to help me design a healthy eating plan and she said that I should look into surgery. I politely declined and said that I rather spend the time going over an eating plan. She said she could give me some literature to look at but that I should strongly consider surgery. Surgery is fine if that's what you want but I don't want it for a number of reasons but look how easy it is to get it pushed on you.

    Anyway, sorry for the long post and sorry if I offend anyone. These are just my thoughts on this issue

  19. #19
    fredelicious mini-masher overthere's Avatar
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    I know 'we' get on the issue of obesity here at BF, but there isn't a better support group once you take a bike in hand and make an effort towards a healthier life style!

    You have a bike 'ney', or are you shopping for one? Used to ride and want to get back into it? Would love to see the day, when you go back to that nutristionist, tanned and fit, and tell her that you did it with a bike and healthy eating, not by going under the knife...

  20. #20
    ney
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    Hi 'overthere'. I actually have a bike (Giant Cypress LX) but I guess I'm too heavy for it right now -it creaks a lot and the seat post can't hold my weight. I got it a couple of years ago but I guess I never got serious enough to ride it. I used to ride a lot as a kid and I'm looking forward to getting back into it.

    Right now I'm taking spinning classes at my gym and really like them. Hopefully I can get back into the "recommended weight range" for the bike before it gets cold outside again!

    I think the BF provides great support and encouragement to those of us who are starting out; I've been reading for a couple of weeks and I'm pumped!!!

  21. #21
    Total Hack labratmatt's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by HiYoSilver
    For these people a 1,000 calorie diet will result in same body weight as 2,500 normal diet.
    Are you out of your fscking mind? I sure hope you're just BSing and don't actually believe this.
    My brain: it's my second favorite organ. - Woody Allen (Sleeper)

  22. #22
    Senior Member Pedal Wench's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by noisebeam
    But I also don't like the frequent attitude I see here in the bike forums of ripping on overweight people and their lifestyles - to me that is not constructive.

    Al
    I take a lot of abuse from the people I work with for the way I live my life. They make fun of my salads, they make fun of the time I spend riding, and call me crazy and stupid for some of the riding I do. A snide, "Get a motor" was the most recent. When these same people are getting bypass surgery, or having significant other health issues (diabetes, back surgery, heart disease) that are causing MY insurance rates to go up, I think I have earned the right to question their choices in this forum, a group that understands my passion and commitment to cycling. In my world, being active makes ME the outsider, the one that gets teased! I have no problem with anyone's weight - I have a problem with people who make fun of me because I'm active.

    Ney, I'm so impressed that you're trying to make a change. I guess that's all that counts - trying ANYTHING, and sticking to it, terrific. Keep up the work. As you've noticed, we all have opinions, but anyone who's on a bike (yes, even a spinning bike!) is welcome!
    Last edited by 3cannondales; 05-23-05 at 10:25 PM.

  23. #23
    Name's Ash ...housewares Doctor Morbius's Avatar
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    A tale of two cities ... and two tails!!
    I did not achieve this position in life by having some snot-nosed punk leave my cheese out in the wind. - Ed Rooney


    It's not that I'm lazy. I'm just highly motivated to RELAX!!

  24. #24
    Member effulgent's Avatar
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    Ok, so here's my beef. I'm a big gal. I've been a big gal my whole life. Last year, I got a gym membership for free, so I thought I'd try it out.

    I went to atheletic stores to find some shorts to wear to the gym - none carried my size. I went to Lane Bryant and Avenue to find clothes, nothing. I was finally able to find some pajama bottoms made out of t-shirt material that I was able to use as makeshift yoga shorts. I got some cotton t-shirts for the Big & Tall men's shop.

    I also had a hard time finding sneakers that fit my wide feet that didn't give me problems after more than 30 minutes of aerobics.

    This year, my husband and I decided to start cycling. He was a very avid cycling enthusiast before we got married, and decided that it would be a good thing to pick up again. I decided to join him. I went to multiple bike stores in my area, and none had cycling shorts or jerseys my size. I finally was able to order some pants online and I hope they fit (I ordered them, haven't gotten them yet but will soon). I found ONE brand of cycling clothes that had my size in bike shorts and they were twice as expensive than "regular sized" bike shorts. I picked up some dry-weave basketball-type T-shirts at a department store because they had no jerseys in my size except for online. And I'm scared to death of trying to find cycling shoes because of my wide feet.

    Now, I know "I can't find clothes" is no excuse for not exercising. But what I can't understand is that people keep droning on and on about obesity and how large people need to get exercise, and yet there are very few places where a larger person can get clothes to work out in. There are other things that need modifications for bigger bodies like mine to get moving, and it's exasperating trying to find equipment like that. There are very few online articles about how to make cycling comfortable and effective exercise for larger men and women. Thank goodness I've found a few places online where I can ask questions from those who have already gone down that path and can point me in the right directions.

    I struggled with making the decision to wear true cycling shorts that would make my riding experience better vs wearing more modest "skort" type shorts or MTB shorts which would not be as appropriate. I finally said, screw it, people are going to see my big butt in cycling knickers. I want to ride. I really enjoy it. I need to exercise. But I have years of working on my self esteem behind me, many others still struggle terribly with self image issues and self esteem. It's scary putting yourself out there when your body is a telltale giveaway that you're not like "the others". It takes courage and determination. It's not easy. As a matter of fact, it's terrifying.

    And people who say, "They should just get out there and walk and not eat so much!" don't realize how hard it is to get out there and take your first step. The only comparison to lifestyle change that I can think of is imagine waking up and someone telling you to be healthy, you have to be a vegan. No meat, no eggs, no milk. Imagine the lifestyle changes you'd have to make. You'd have to eat differently, shop differently, arrange your schedule differently in your life to make time to prepare the veggies. You'd have to eat different places and do a lot of things you've never done before. Yes, starting an exercise program feels that drastic. I know. I went vegan this year. And getting out there in spandex multiple times a week is scarier than even that.

    Some of us are trying really hard. I've lost 15 pounds so far this year with diet and exercise, including cycling. But I've got a long way to go, and I won't look like some of the thinner, more experienced riders for quite some time. I encourage all of you to be supportive of all people who have the courage to at least try to get out there and walk or cycle or join a gym or whatever they're trying to do to make themselves better people.
    Last edited by effulgent; 05-24-05 at 12:53 AM.

  25. #25
    Sprockette wabbit's Avatar
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    There definitely is a catch 22 there. It's like gym clothes are made for people who are already skinny! And it seems that when people want to exercise and change their lifestyle, they have to put up with 'gee look at the fatso on the treadmil' or whatever. But if you're skinny they think, 'Yeah, she's probably anorexic and obsessed with staying thin." You can't win! I know one guy who decided to get into cycling. He was kind of chubby. So he got a bike but for months decided to just use it on the trainer until he lost some weight. It sounds weird, but I can understand it, being self conscious about going out on your bike when you're chubby, with all the skinny cyclists around. But as you'll see here, and elsewhere, when someone who is heavy or whatever, decides to get on a bike, cyclists are generally pretty supportive. I don't know anyone who thinks, "Gee, look at the fat person on a bike." It's more like "that's great, this person is out riding and getting into shape!" But of course it's hard to get to the first step. A person who is overweight and out of shape can't just get up and run a marathon!

    It's really bizarre though that people are so intolerant of people who cycle and live a healthy lifestyle! I saw another article about how type 2 diabetes is becoming rampant among teens and kids. You'd think people would be more concerned with that than with someone who eats salads and rides a bike. They probably sneer at you while their kids sit at home eating junk food in front of the Playstation.
    You can catch more flies with honey than with vinegar. That's great...if you want to attract vermin.

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