We found this article over the weekend and it seems to sum up very nicely, the epidemic we are all facing. Personally, I want to stay fit until the day I die (hopefully in my sleep of just plain wearing out). I want to be able to continue what we did this weekend (see my entry on canoeing) for as long as I can. And quite frankly, I’d rather spend my hard-earned, uninsured money on things other than medical bills. Toys are fun….doctors are not!
Reprinted from Yahoo news:
BOSTON, Massachusetts (AFP) – Obesity — which affects one in every three Americans — and the illnesses associated with it cost the United States some 90.7 billion dollars a year in health care costs, a University of Pennsylvania researcher said. Among developed countries, the United States has the most obese and overweight people, representing 66 percent of its overall population. Costs tied to excess pounds account for 5.04 percent of all US health care costs. The calculations by Professor Adam Gilden Tsai of the University of Pennsylvania, presented at a conference on obesity here Saturday, are based on a comparison of 30 previous studies on the cost of obesity for the US health care system.
An obese person racks up an additional 1,034 dollars (or 40 percent) in health care costs for doctors’ visits, medications and medical procedures compared with a person of average weight. For someone who is overweight but not yet obese, the medical bills amount to 273 dollars more a year, or 9.3 percent more than those of an average-weight person. And obese patients over the age of 65 pay an additional 2,511 dollars in medical bills. Obesity often leads to other conditions, such as arthritis, asthma, breast cancer, colon cancer, diabetes and heart disease.