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

WLWT/Screen Shot by NPR
May 31, 2016 | NPR · The complaint comes after the zoo killed a gorilla to protect a child who climbed into its enclosure. The group, Stop Animal Exploitation Now!, said the gorilla’s enclosure was inadequate.
 

AP
May 31, 2016 | NPR · When Trump Entertainment Resorts filed for bankruptcy in 2014, it won a ruling from a federal bankruptcy judge stripping casino workers of their health insurance and payments to the pension fund.
 

May 31, 2016 | KUNC · Conservationists have long blamed farmers’ use of pesticides for decimating the milkweed that monarch caterpillars like to eat. But scientists say simply planting more milkweed isn’t the answer.
 

Arts & Life

NPR
May 31, 2016 | NPR · On our inaugural episode, we’re digging into how we talk about whiteness — or, really, how we don’t talk about it — and hear from some folks who say it’s really important that we figure out how.
 

May 31, 2016 | NPR · Neil Gaiman is best known for his fictional creations, but he’s also a prolific producer of essays, album liner notes, speeches and introductions — now collected in The View From the Cheap Seats.
 

Courtesy of The Met Breuer Museum
May 31, 2016 | NPR · Nearly 200 great works of unfinished art are now on display at The Met Breuer Museum in Manhattan. Spanning six centuries, the works offer a glimpse into the creative process — from Titian to Warhol.
 

Music

Mountain Stage
May 31, 2016 | NPR · Hear the Appalachian rock band make its Mountain Stage debut in West Virginia.
 

Getty Images
May 31, 2016 | NPR · Carrie Brownstein returns to All Songs to chat about relentless earworms, annoying novelty songs and other songs our hosts think of as quite possibly the worst of all time.
 

Courtesy of the artist
May 30, 2016 | WXPN · The Nashville singer and songwriter reinvents herself with her new album, Ain’t Who I Was.
 

Get the KRCC iPhone App

The Writer's Almanac

Radiolab