Fat gaining on tobacco as top killer

Anakha1

Banned
Fat gaining on tobacco as top killer

CHICAGO, Illinois (AP) -- Inactive Americans are eating themselves to death at an alarming rate, their unhealthy habits fast approaching tobacco as the top underlying preventable cause of death, a government study found.

In 2000, poor diet including obesity and physical inactivity caused 400,000 U.S. deaths -- more than 16 percent of all deaths and the No. 2 killer. That compares with 435,000 for tobacco, or 18 percent, as the top underlying killer.

The gap between the two is substantially narrower than in 1990, when poor diet and inactivity caused 300,000 deaths, 14 percent, compared with 400,000 for tobacco, or 19 percent, says a report from the federal Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

"This is tragic," said Dr. Julie Gerberding, CDC's director and an author of the study. "Our worst fears were confirmed."

"It's going to overtake tobacco" if the trend continues, Gerberding said. "At CDC, we're going to do everything we can to prevent it," she said. "Obesity has got to be job No. 1 for us in terms of chronic diseases."

The researchers analyzed data from 2000 for the leading causes of death and for those preventable factors known to contribute to them. Like tobacco, obesity and inactivity increase the risks for the top three killers: heart disease, cancer and cerebrovascular ailments including strokes. Obesity and inactivity also strongly increase the risk of diabetes, the sixth leading cause of death.

The results appear in Wednesday's Journal of the American Medical Association.

U.S. Department of Health and Human Services officials discussed the findings Tuesday at a Washington news briefing where they announced a public service ad campaign using humor to get Americans to pay attention to the dangers of inactivity and obesity.

"I am working very hard at CDC to walk the talk," Gerberding said in a telephone interview, noting efforts the agency has made at CDC offices to improve the health of its 9,000-plus employees.

They include putting music, lights and fresh paint jobs in stairwells to encourage employees to use the stairs for exercise. Also, besides the current indoor smoking ban, CDC will ban smoking from outside all of its buildings starting later this year.

In order, the leading causes of death in 2000 were: Heart disease, cancer, strokes and other cerebrovascular disease, chronic lower respiratory disease, unintentional injuries, diabetes, influenza and pneumonia, Alzheimer's disease, kidney disease, and septicemia.

The underlying preventable causes of death were, in order: tobacco, poor diet and physical inactivity, alcohol, microbial agents, toxic agents, motor vehicles, firearms, sexual behavior and illegal drug use. Together, these accounted for about half of all 2.4 million U.S. deaths in 2000.

An editorial accompanying the study in JAMA says national leadership and policy changes are needed to help curb preventable causes of death.

"After all, wisdom is knowing what to do next. Virtue is doing it," said editorial authors Drs. J. Michael McGinnis and William Foege. McGinnis is with the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and Foege is with the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation.
http://www.cnn.com/2004/HEALTH/diet.fitness/03/09/obesity.ap/index.html

I'm not surprised. Sure people smoke themselves to death and are villainized, but what about the people who eat themselves to death? Looks like they're going to start racing neck and neck pretty soon. *runs off to hit the gym*
 

Hippie Holocost

Diabloii.Net Member
Hmm I smoke and eat fast food religously.... I wonder whats going to get me first...

*trys to run to gym but runs out of breath, so he crawls to McDonalds*
 

cougar

Diabloii.Net Member
Well, now that McDonald's has gotten rid of supersizing, I expect a 100% decrease in obesity levels.
 

Anakha1

Banned
Hippie Holocost said:
Hmm I smoke and eat fast food religously.... I wonder whats going to get me first...

*trys to run to gym but runs out of breath, so he crawls to McDonalds*

Taking all bets... which will kill HH first? One at a time, all bets are final.

*drops a house on cougar* Please tell me you're joking. Or put a smiley in there to let me know that you're being sarcastic. If you're not, I may just cry. I'm almost sure that you are, but I need reassurance.
 

CaptJoe213

Diabloii.Net Member
I'm with HH, but since McD is getting rid of the supersized stuff, I'll crawl my wheezing self over to Burger King instead. Gotta Have It My Way!

I might have to stop at a convience store for a hotdog and a pack of smokes, BK is nearly a half mile away from me :lol:
 

Anakha1

Banned
CaptJoe213 said:
I'm with HH, but since McD is getting rid of the supersized stuff, I'll crawl my wheezing self over to Burger King instead. Gotta Have It My Way!

I might have to stop at a convience store for a hotdog and a pack of smokes, BK is nearly a half mile away from me :lol:
You're trying to give me apoplexy, aren't you? :D
 

cougar

Diabloii.Net Member
sarcastic? Bah, no. Now w/out supersizing, people will have to order TWO WHOLE LARGES. That idea in itself is just downright preposterous. And obviously all people who are obese eat at McDonald's.. and now that they aren't getting those extra 10-20 fries, they'll be dropping pounds at blistering rates.
 

Geeno

Diabloii.Net Member
Anakha1 said:
I'm not surprised. Sure people smoke themselves to death and are villainized, but what about the people who eat themselves to death? Looks like they're going to start racing neck and neck pretty soon. *runs off to hit the gym*
So can we ban being fat in bars now?
 

Chief JB

Diabloii.Net Member
I don't eat fast food very much. Not even during lunch at school. I stay in the cafeteria and get golden chicken nuggets fried to perfection. :thumbsup:
 

Sergeant

Diabloii.Net Member
McD's eliminating supersizing won't do a thing. It might help 5 people who aren't determined to stuff their face regardless. Even if McD's doesn't have supersize, there are still BK, Wendy's, Jack In The Box, Hardees, Carl's Jr. and a host of other fast food places that offer comparable upsizing. If people can't get it at McD's, they'll just go somewhere else.

It's like saying people who smoke Marbs would stop if Marb stopped making cigarettes or people who drink Budwieser would stop drinking if Anheuser-Busch stopped brewing it.

As long as fast food is around, people will get fat off it. As long as beer is around, people will drink it and as long as tobacco is around, people will smoke it.

Success in the fight against obesity will be won when people start being more responsible for their OWN health.
 

AeroJonesy

Diabloii.Net Member
I don't really care, as long as I don't have to pay for health benefits to those eating themselves to death.

It is interesting how smoking is so often villanized, but being fat isn't. Because people are fat, it's more personal that someone who smokes. A smoker only looks like a smoker when they are smoking. But everyone can see when someone's obese.

You know how there's a ban against tobacco companies advertising certain places? Do you think we'll see calls for a similar ban on fast food companies? Will people be outraged when they see gluttony in movies?
 

dorcusmalorcus

Diabloii.Net Member
OK, so now that obesity is being recognized as a major preventable killer, can businesses and insurance companies begin to legally discriminate against fat people?

For instance, most insurance companies require a physical before they will insure you. They also inquire about what they consider dangerous behavior, with smoking now being very high on the list. If they deem you too high a risk either for behavior or health, they have the right to not offer you insurance. Since obesity is quickly closing in on smoking, do you think insurance companies will soon deem obese people too high a risk to insure?

Take that scenario a step further. Could a company that provides health insurance to its employees choose not to hire/fire an obese person if their insurance provider declines to cover that person? Or, if the insurance company agrees to cover the obese person, but at twice the rate of others, could a company get rid of that obese person because they financially can't afford them anymore?
 
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