Michelle Obama Warns Childhood Obesity Causes Diabetes

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Michelle Obama traveled to America's most overweight state yesterday, Mississippi, to push her anti-obesity campaign. The obesity rates of children and adults across the U.S. is alarming, but most alarming are the effects of obesity, specifically making people at risk for diabetes. Rising obesity rates are directly correlated with rising diabetes rates, making anti-obesity programs significant in areas where obesity continues to be a problem.

Some critics have questioned the first lady's motives to pick “childhood obesity” as one of her issues because its a safe bet, no controversial sides can be taken. However, obesity, politics or no, is clearly a serious problem. The American Diabetes Association released a study from The New England Journal of Medicine last month that revealed how childhood obesity is a risk for premature death.

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The study was conducted on 4,857 American Indian children, born without diabetes between 1945 and 1984, “559 of them died before 55 years of age, 166 of them from natural causes. The 1,214 most overweight children in the group had a mortality frequency that was about 230 percent of the leanest group. High blood sugar elevated the frequency of death by 73 percent, and high blood pressure raised the risk by 53 percent.”

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention stated that low-income, preschool-aged children between 1998-2008 had an obesity rate of 1 out of 7. Considering the high risk factor of those children developing diabetes later in life, obesity issues further prove to be a significant problem in our society.

Many of the critics feel the first lady should be tackling more controversial issues like health care reform, and they're right, but Michelle Obama's efforts to stop increasing obesity rates is just as important and significant to the nation's growing health epidemic problems. Preventative medicine will have a much larger impact on health care than anything else.

“We all know that when our kids don't eat right and they don't get enough exercise, what happens is that they're at greater risk of a whole range of preventable diseases -- things like diabetes. And a long time ago diabetes was also only something that happened in adults, and now we're seeing it more and more among kids because they're less healthy,” stated Michelle Obama in Mississippi yesterday.

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