Writer’s Name: S.F. Hardy
Title: Obesity: The Beast of the Present and Future
As if battling my own personal weight issues wasn’t enough already, obesity hits closer to home on a grander scale, as it was recently reported that Michigan ranks in the top ten in the nation for obesity. In fact, Michigan holds the fifth spot nationally for individuals who are overweight.
No age group seems to be exempt, as adults, teens and children alike make up these unhealthy numbers. If something is not done to reverse this harmful trend, Trust for America's Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation emphasizes “Nearly 60 percent of Michigan residents could be obese by 2030 and health care costs could soar.” The implications of obesity as we may know leads to greater health risk such: as coronary heart disease, stroke, hypertension, cancers related to obesity, diabetes and more, which will only serve to inflate health care cost.
Detroit predominately comprised of African Americans suffers greatly from obesity. Although one wouldn’t be able to tell by the mass quantities of garments sold by Metro Detroit retailers, for what seems like only small people, just 3 short years ago Detroit was ranked the 27th fattest city in Men’s Health Magazine. To those who live and work in the city, this may not come to a surprise as there are a plethora of McDonalds, Coney Islands and other fast-food restaurants throughout the city, compounded with a surplus of individuals who rarely engage in physical activity and exercise. This adds to the reasoning behind why Detroit is being listed as one the nations fattest areas.
A survey by the Center for Disease Control reveals that “almost 20 percent of Detroit students are obese.” Unhealthy dietary practices and physical inactivity are cited as the main culprits. The study ultimately divulges that more emphasis should be placed on preventative measures in addition to corrective actions. We most definitely need to focus on physical activity and dietary education for our young folks! It is imperative in order to halt the predicted future of obesity. If not, children will carry on with these practices, which they most likely learned from their respective environments into adult hood. The risk that they pass on to the next generation is far greater than not!
Another study reported in The Detroit Free Press largely blames, soda or pop depending on what region you dwell adding “sugary drinks cause people to pack on the pounds, independent of other unhealthy behavior, such as overeating and getting too little exercise, scientists say.”
While it is easy for some to offer what they consider to be simple solutions for losing weight, the reality is very much complex and intertwined. Some of us are genetically predisposed to obesity, while others find it very difficult if not impossible to change their lifestyle in order to gain a healthy weight status. With our busy lifestyles and shortage of time, we are often tempted by fast food, in spite of our knowledge of the potential dangers as well as the lack of nutrition it provides. Work and school takes up a great deal of our time, so squeezing in a work out seems impossible. However, most trainers will advise working harder during the workout is more beneficial than working out longer.
Starving oneself is not an option in the weight loss battle either. Starvation is rather counterproductive because when one does not eat the body begins to react as if you are ill and holds on to the fat rather than release it, so to speak.
I’m not sure what the correlation is if any to obesity, but Detroit is making strides to become a healthier city. The city has recently implemented bike lanes throughout the city proper and has also added bike as well as walking trails such as the revered River Walk and Dequindre Cut through the heart of the city. Walkers and bikers can also enjoy Palmer Park as well as Belle Isle.
Weight loss and healthy living are possible with planning and realistic goals. Sure, it will take some time getting adjusted in the beginning but eventually you will begin to see results and your new lifestyle will become like second nature. Plan meals ahead, pre-bag fruits and snacks so that they can be grabbed on the go. Substitute flavored beverages for water. I find drinking room temperature water easier to swallow. If you must have flavoring, add a drop or two of lemon to your water. Exercise around your other obligations. Notice the operative word “obligation;” your health as well as the way you view yourself is just as important as anything else you do! Also, consider support groups, aside from engaging with others who face similar obstacles; the benefits normally include recipes and techniques to help you on your journey to shedding the pounds and becoming healthier.
Fiery Fish Tacos with Crunchy Corn Salsa
(taken from http://allrecipes.com/recipe/fiery-fish-tacos-with-crunchy-corn-salsa/Detail.aspx?src=lp4107_l1)
1. Preheat grill for high heat.
2. In a medium bowl, mix together corn, red onion, jicama, red bell pepper, and cilantro. Stir in lime juice and zest.
3. In a small bowl, combine cayenne pepper, ground black pepper, and salt. Brush each fillet with olive oil, and sprinkle with spices.
4. Arrange fillets on grill grate, and cook for 3 minutes per side. For each fiery fish taco, top two corn tortillas with fish, sour cream, and corn salsa.
For Tasty but Healthy Eating