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Opinion

Wide girth could signal trouble ahead

Gaining weight around the girth is like being pregnant. We often hear, "How did this happen!" If we really think about those expanded girths, a lot of men would look pregnant due to an over abundance of belly fat, which causes some men's stomachs to look like those of gestating women.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, obesity has become a national threat to society. One out of every three adults is obese. That is a whopping (excuse the pun) 35.7 percent. In a 2008 report, 42 percent of the U.S. population will be obese by the year 2030.

Our portion size per meal is more than four times the size it was in the late 1950's. The average hamburger grew from 3.5 ounces to 12 ounces. And those tasty, salty French fries went from 2.7 ounces to 7 ounces. As if those increases weren't enough, it is not uncommon to hear, "Supersize that, please!"

The times have changed. Our society now lives for the rush of the moment and we suffer the consequences when diabetes, high blood pressure and cancer begin ravaging our bodies. Now the time has come for the U.S. to take control of this mad-eating frenzy – for obesity, in a nutshell, is unacceptable, even if the individual is happy.

Can obesity be legislated? Or better yet, should the clergy decide what we should eat to stay healthy spiritually, morally and physically? Preachers and politicians don't have all the answers. We can't legislate obesity and we can't pray it away.

Overeating is like consuming the forbidden fruit. For example, we can't seem to resist biting into a scrumptious, finger-licking good piece of chicken from the deep fryer and dripping with hot grease. Like Adam and Eve in the Bible, it doesn't take much to tempt us to eat something that is unhealthy and life-threatening.

The health care bill that President Barack Obama signed into law and passed will in time help those individuals seeking adequate healthcare, but the masses will not take advantage. As a people, we are always looking for a short cut or a simple solution to overcome or fix our health impairments. Most of us believe that a shot in the hip or a handful of pills will resolve every health issue.

We never hear Congress getting upset about our staggering obesity, diabetes or cancer rates, which affects one in three U.S. adults and contributes to our healthcare system becoming financially overloaded and saddled with massive debt.

There is a double standard in regards to our unregulated healthcare system. Too many in Congress, I believe, are complicit in the unlimited amount of money that is generated from healthcare. President Obama's healthcare bill is only a temporary fix. We need a permanent solution.

In 1972, then-president Richard Nixon declared war on cancer. Since then millions of dollars have been raised and spent on cancer research and treatments. Yet it is still the second-leading cause of death. If something doesn't change, cancer will move to number one.

People are going to die each and every year from preventable diseases with few exceptions. The current number-one cause of death is heart disease, which kills 1,650 individuals each day, followed by cancer (1,559 a day) and diabetes (145 a day).

Gun deaths are causing a raucous nowadays. As Americans, we're off target a little. Gun control is important, but we should take the same initiative to revamp and control our healthcare system. Then we'll begin to resolve some of the healthcare challenges.

One out of every 11 adults is diabetic, often the result of being overweight or obese. Men, women and children are candidates for diabetes. If this continues, one out of every three children is poised to become diabetic. The statistics for our grandchildren is even worse.

A wide girth doesn't help either. In fact, belly fat is a precursor to diabetes, a factor that must be dealt with to prevent subsequent health problems and the high cost of medical care. The average cost for treating a non-diabetic, for example, is $2,550 per year; for a diabetic, it's $11,500 per year. The overall cost of treating diabetes in the U.S. is around $174 million dollars each year.

If you are a man or woman gaining weight around your girth, you might want to do something about it before it leads to obesity and a debilitating illness. So make simple lifestyle changes. Try this on for size: shop with a list, cook meals at home, and look at the ingredients before purchasing any goods.

(Dr. Timothy Moore teaches nutrition, heart disease and diabetes reversal through a plant-based lifestyle. He is a professional speaker, wellness coach and personal plant-based chef. He is the author of "47 Tips To Reverse Your Diabetes." He can be reached by email at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. , visit him at www.cheftimothymoore.com or follow him at www.twitter.com/cheftimmoore.)

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