New Report Finds Michigan Has 9th Highest Percent of Obese Adults and 26th Highest Percent of Obese and Overweight Children in the U.S. studyTrust for America’s Health, a health advocacy organization, recently released nationwide obesity statistics and found Michigan to be ranked the ninth most obese in America. With 28.8 percent of the Michigan population obese, including more than one-third of 55 to 64-year-olds, Michigan is up from last year’s tenth-place ranking.
Incomplete streets restrict physical activity
When streets are designed only for cars, they deny people the opportunity to choose more active ways to get around, such as walking and biking. Even where sidewalks exist, large intersections and speeding traffic may make walking unpleasant or even unsafe – discouraging any non-motorized travel.
One study found that 43% of people with safe places to walk within 10 minutes of home met recommended activity levels; among those without safe places to walk just 27% met the recommendation. Residents are 65% more likely to walk in a neighborhood with sidewalks.
Walkability has a direct and specific relation to the health of residents. A comprehensive study of walkability has found that people in walkable neighborhoods did about 35-45 more minutes of moderate intensity physical activity per week and were substantially less likely to be overweight or obese than similar people living in low-walkable neighborhoods.
Communites with a Complete Streets policy ensures streets are designed and altered to make it easy for people to get physical activity as part of their daily routine, helping them stay trim, avoid heart disease, and receive the many other benefits of physical activity.
Vist www.completestreets.org for more info on the numerous benefits of Complete Streets.
View animated obestity trends from 1985 to 2008 at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s website.