America’s Obesity Epidemic Costs Double Previous Estimates



A new study, published recently in the Journal of Health Economics, revealed that obesity accounts for 21% of U.S. health care spending, twice as high as previous estimates from the Centers for Disease Control. TrekDesk treadmill desks has been promoting the idea of walking while working to prevent more than 58 obesity related diseases linked to sedentary lifestyles over the past three years.

The researchers from Cornell University found that obese individuals health care costs were $2,741 a year higher (2005 dollars) than a height/weight proportionate individual. That added a $190.2 billion annual tax onto the health care system, accounting for 20.6% of total U.S. health care spending.

“Historically, we’ve been underestimating the benefit of preventing and reducing obesity,” stated John Cawley, a professor of economics and policy analysis and management at Cornell, in a university news release.

“Obesity raises the risk of cancer, stroke, heart attack and diabetes,” Cawley related. “For any type of surgery, there are complications [for the obese] with anesthesia, with healing. Obesity raises the costs of treating almost any medical condition. It adds up very quickly.”

The costs do not include the impact on American business due to lost productivity or the generational risk posed by a nation of overweight children. The researchers believe these findings bolster the case for government intervention to prevent obesity. TrekDesk Treadmill Desks agrees but has a slightly different take on the findings.

“The government, despite good intentions has been ineffective in the battle against obesity but to be fair so has the weight loss industry in general. We are fighting a losing battle if we barrage health stressed citizens with more weight loss rhetoric without giving them more opportunities to move through out the day,” stated Steve Bordley, CEO of TrekDesk Treadmill Desks.

“There is no doubt that our nation must make better dietary choices but we must also start counting daily steps as much as calories and re-design the work/school environments in our nation to encourage movement or our health epidemic is going to implode much further. Many scientists and government officials are on the record stating that obesity represents the single largest risk to our nation’s security and prosperity. It is time we start listening.”

About TrekDesk Treadmill Desks: Designed to fit any existing treadmill, TrekDesk treadmill desk is an affordable, full sized, height adjustable workstation that allows individuals the opportunity to gain the necessary amount of exercise daily to maintain health, prevent disease, strengthen muscles, boost mood and productivity, without requiring additional time during the day or extra motivation. Let TrekDesk show you how to workout at work.

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