A recent report shows Colorado on track to more than double its obesity rate within 20 years. That could mean billions of dollars more in health care costs unless the trend begins to reverse. Aspen Public Radio‘s Luke Runyon reports.

Audio clip: Adobe Flash Player (version 9 or above) is required to play this audio clip. Download the latest version here. You also need to have JavaScript enabled in your browser.

One out of every five adults in Colorado is obese now. Which doesn’t sound great, but still gives the state the bragging right as the leanest in the country.

“To put it in perspective though, even that rate, which is the lowest in the country, would¿ve been the highest in country just 20 years ago.”

Rich Hamburg is with the advocacy group Trust for America’s Health, which compiled the report. He says even though Colorado is doing better compared to other states, it’s on a trajectory to more than double the percentage of obese people by 2030, pushing Colorado closer to the pack of more obese states.

“Colorado’s rate seems to be rising a bit faster. That might be a factor coming from being the lowest possible rate.”

Hamburg says just a slight dip in body fat across the population could save more than 10 billion dollars in health care costs down the line.

State and federal officials have yet to find a singular solution to the crisis. The Colorado Health Institute’s Sara Shmitt says to reverse the trend, there’s been a large emphasis on children and schools.

“Because we do know that children that are overweight or obese are more likely to be overweight or obese as adults.”

Shmitt says some programs have shown success. Changes to school lunch menus have slowed weight gain in certain schools, and increased access to walking and biking trails has done the same in neighborhoods.

 

Comments are closed.

News

Discovery Education 3M Young Scientist Challenge
October 20, 2017 | NPR · The Colorado seventh-grader was unimpressed by the options her parents had to test water in their home. So she created a sensor-based device using chemically treated carbon nanotubes to do it faster.
 

superjoy via YouTube/Screenshot by NPR
October 20, 2017 | NPR · The billboard and TV spot shows a Nigerian beauty pageant winner using a product called Natural Fairness Body Lotion. Critics are describing the ad as “colorist” and tone deaf.
 

October 20, 2017 | NPR · The military has some 20 missions across the continent. Most are not combat operations. But the deaths of four soldiers in Niger illustrate the dangers as the U.S. troops venture into the field.
 

Arts & Life

A24
October 20, 2017 | NPR · Yorgos Lanthimos’ deadpan film explores the friendship between a cardiologist (Colin Farrell) and an odd young man (Barry Keoghan) with mysterious intentions.
 

AFP/Getty Images
October 20, 2017 | NPR · Bannon, the man who helped steer and engineer President Trump’s recent political success, underwent an evolution during his time in — of all places — Hollywood.
 

October 20, 2017 | FA · A heart surgeon develops a strange relationship with a teenage boy in Yorgos Lanthimos’ new film. Reviewer Justin Chang says The Killing of a Sacred Deer is an “unnervingly strange” horror movie.
 

Music

WireImage
October 20, 2017 | NPR · Their overnight surprise mixtape release comes with an honorable mention for one of Atlanta’s instrumental sonic architects.
 

Courtesy of the artist
October 20, 2017 | WXPN-FM · This year marks the 30th anniversary of her album Solitude Standing, and the 25th of 99.9F°.
 

October 20, 2017 | FA · The Nashville-based singer-songwriter has a new album that explores the joys of long-term commitment. Rock critic Ken Tucker says the collection is her most personal and accessible to date.
 

Get the KRCC iPhone App

The Writer's Almanac

Radiolab