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Rising Obesity Rates = Climbing Healthcare Costs

Posted on May 27 2014

Obesity, which experts say is now attributed as the number 1 cause of preventable diseases in the United States (recently surpassing smoking), takes a toll on not only our health, well-being, and quality of life, but it also burdens our healthcare system and our bank accounts. According to results from the latest Gallup data, the nation’s 2014 obesity rate has climbed to 27.7% and the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recently announced that obesity costs our nation an estimated $147 billion per year in direct costs!   In order to determine the overall costs of being obese, experts took into consideration the costs of obesity related conditions, such as type 2 diabetes, joint disorders, and heart disease; although there are many other costly health implications (like gallbladder disease, high blood pressure, and colon cancer) that are also associated with obesity and can drastically increase the costs of being obese. When taking into consideration other obesity related costs such as lost wages, productivity, higher insurance premiums and more co-pays, the costs of being obese jumps up to an estimated $190 billion. Although determining the exact costs of being obese is difficult, experts estimate that the average obese American spends between $1,429 and $2,741 a year on just their medical expenses, and that doesn’t include the costs of transportation, let alone the losses in quality of life or the costs of depression (obesity and depression have a strong link and depression has its own set of economical costs).   The most recent Gallup data has also shown that economical disparities exist in that those with higher economical standings had lower obesity rates; finding a 23.1% obesity rate for those making at least $90,000 a year, while those who make $36,000 or less a year have a higher obesity rate of 31.5%. It’s unfortunate that those who have a higher rate of obesity tend to have lower annual incomes since they have to spend more money on their healthcare costs than those who aren’t obese.   Losing weight is a great way to start improving your health and well-being while working towards reducing your healthcare costs. For those who are looking to kick start their weight loss plan and work towards reducing their healthcare costs Mountainside Medical Equipment has a whole section of their website dedicated to weight loss products, as well as exercise and fitness products, to help get you started. Routinely exercising and following a well-balanced diet plan is an effective weight-loss plan.   Sources: http://www.foxnews.com/health/2014/05/14/could-your-waistline-be-costing-thousands/ http://www.foxnews.com/health/2014/05/22/us-obesity-rate-reaches-new-high/ http://www.mountainside-medical.com/top-10-risks-of-obesity.html/

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