October 20, 2014

Report forecasts heavy future in Wisconsin

There is a grim forecast of an obese future in the U.S. and Wisconsin. A new report from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation says at the current rate of childhood obesity – by 2030 – 56 percent of Wisconsinites would be obese. 

Dwayne Proctor, director of the foundation’s Childhood Obesity Team, says that would lead to a 15 percent increase in health care costs because of type 2 diabetes, hypertension, and heart disease and stroke.

However, Proctor says solutions of better food and more activity in schools have been implemented in recent years and are turning the tide in places like Mississippi, Philadelphia, California and Massachusetts. Wisconsin health officials have also been addressing this issue.

The annual study ranks the Badger State 27th highest in obesity nationwide, with 27 percent of Wisconsinites considered obese in 2011. The percentage was about the same in 2010, although the state ranked 25th that year.