The 50 Million Pound Weight lOSS Challenge Tops 375,000 Lbs
Fourteen weeks into its 14-city U.S. tour, 173,143 people have joined at 50millionpounds.com, losing 377,790 total pounds.
Vowing to "give up the pounds, not the fight," Dr. Ian Smith-physician, author of the NY Times #1 best-seller Extreme Fat Smash Diet and VH1 Celebrity Fit Club expert-has created The 50 Million Pound Challenge. Supported by a host of African-American leaders and sponsored by State Farm, The Challenge is coming to Atlanta on July 21 for a free special event of fitness & fun to help people take control of their health and take up the fight against weight-related illnesses. On pace as one of the most far-reaching initiatives of its kind, The Challenge is an historic campaign & commitment by the African-American community to rally people across the U.S. to get fit & lose weight -- and ultimately live longer, look & feel great.
A star-studded cast will be at Centennial Olympic Park from 12-4 p.m. (EDT) on Saturday, July 21 for a free afternoon of live music, fitness & fun expected to draw thousands. Joining Dr. Ian Smith are American Music Award-winning R&B singer/ songwriter Keith Sweat, Grammy-nominated R&B star Omarion, hip-hop/soul star singing group Jagged Edge, rapper Bone Crusher, Atlanta Falcons Tight End Alge Crumpler, national radio host Steve Harvey and renowned DJ Biz Markie. Attendees can enjoy live entertainment, get free health screenings, learn more about the initiative and its free fitness tips & tools, sign up online, and join Dr. Ian on a Challenge walk. They can also get free eshots photos, which they can keep as "before" shots to show their progress "after" reaching their personal weight-loss goals -- and motivate them to keep the weight off.
The Challenge aims to reach its ambitious goal by making it easier for millions of people to get fit, lose weight and turn back the deadly toll of weight-related diseases that threaten half of all Americans. Each week 10,000 people die from illnesses related to inactivity and diet. For 135 million Americans and 2/3rds of U.S. adults who are overweight -- double the rate a few decades ago -- people's lifestyle choices have become a matter of life and death. The African-American community has been particularly hard hit, losing too many loved ones to heart disease, stroke, diabetes, cancer and related illnesses. Among African Americans, 80% of women and 67% of men face increased risk of deadly illnesses from excess weight.
"This is an historic opportunity to join hands as a community, take control of our health and save lives," said Dr. Ian, author of the NY Times #1 best-seller Extreme Fat Smash Diet. "The groundswell of support is remarkable. More than 170,000 people have joined, losing 375,000 pounds. And we're just getting started. What began as a simple challenge has become a commitment that's spreading across the entire community. Losing weight and getting in shape has never been easier, or more important. Too many are dying from preventable illnesses. The Challenge encourages and empowers people to get fit and give up the pounds that have frustrated so many for so long. It helps us take a giant leap forward towards leading longer, healthier lives."
To mobilize support and fight back The Challenge is hosting events from April to November in 14 cities: Washington, DC, Baltimore, Miami, Memphis, Cleveland, Houston, Detroit, Atlanta, St. Louis, Chicago, New York, Milwaukee, Oakland and New Orleans. The campaign has enlisted as champions more than 50 leaders and celebrities across the African-American community, and national civic & health organizations including the American Diabetes Association, Congressional Black Caucus Foundation Inc., 100 Black Men of America Inc., National Urban League, American Council on Exercise, and Institute for the Advancement of Multicultural & Minority Medicine.
"We're coming to Atlanta to help people take control of their health, make healthier lifestyle choices & give up the pounds, not the fight," said Dr. Ian. "Working together, we will reverse these deadly health trends, one small step at a time, get fit and lose the excess pounds. The reward is worth the weight -- not only will it help you live longer, but you'll look and feel great.
Challenge supporter, R&B star Keith Sweat said, "Life and love is a wonderful thing. When it's right, it's the best thing in the world. We want to make it last forever. But for too many of us, it's over too soon because we're not taking care of ourselves. The Challenge is helping us keep our feet on the ground while we reach for the sky. It reminds us what we need to take care of if we want to make our dreams come true. No matter who you are, you've got to watch out for your health to stay in the game. We all have the power to lead healthier lives. The Challenge gives us a great chance to use it. Sharing your love and dreams means looking out for each other. Showing respect for your health is a commitment to be true to yourself and be there for the ones you love."
Challenge supporter & rapper Bone Crusher said, "Good music is timeless. So is what we create being good to each other. But the time we have on this earth isn't, especially if we get caught up in things that are destructive to our health. Too many people are dying early because they're not exercising & eating right to keep a healthy weight. The good news is it doesn't have to be that difficult if you do it the right way. People ask me how I lost 60 pounds in two months on Celebrity Fit Club. I followed the same advice Dr. Ian gives people for The Challenge. You don't need to diet or starve the weight off. It's much healthier to eat the weight off. You can eat the food you like, just less of it. You don't need anything artificial, like pills or special mixes. Use the natural things God gives us, like fruits, vegetables and organic food. And work out -- that's key.