Report says obesity threatens Oklahoma's future

As many as two-thirds of Oklahomans may be obese by 2030, according to a report released Tuesday. The report also looks at Type 2 diabetes, heart disease and stroke, among other obesity-related diseases.
BY SHANNON MUCHMORE shannon.muchmore@tulsaworld.com Modified: September 18, 2012 at 9:15 pm •  Published: September 18, 2012
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“It's about the family,” she said. “It's about the culture.”

Oklahoma has an obvious problem, but some current programs could change the trajectory and put the state on a healthier path, said Keith Reed, director for the Center for the Advancement of Wellness at the state Health Department.

“I anticipate that this will not come to fruition,” he said of the report's projection.

“First we're going to have to slow the trend,” Reed said. “Then we're going to have to stop it. Then we're going to have to reverse it.”

One current program recognizes certain communities, businesses and schools as certified healthy places. Some communities have worked at a grassroots level to make healthy choices easier choices, Reed said.

The report by Trust for America's Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation recommends updating nutrition standards for snacks and beverages in schools and including physical activity in schools, among other ideas.

“We know how to prevent this,” Trust for America's Health Executive Director Jeff Levi said in a conference call with reporters.

“We know how to reverse this course.”