Category Archives: Obesity/ chronic disease

Overview stories, including a historical lookback. Also see individuals and community programs.

‘This Is a Public Health Emergency’ / One in four W.Va. 11-year-olds has high blood pressure, cholesterol, obesity

“We’re seeing younger and younger people with type 2 diabetes and weight problems that put them at high risk of diabetes,” said Nidia Henderson, wellness director of the West Virginia Public Employees Insurance Board. “The national obesity crisis is hitting West Virginia very hard.”


Thousands of W.Va. kids are headed for diabetes

Jenni, a rural obese teen with high blood pressure and cholesterol, gets a full medical screening at a university clinic, then goes back home to no services, no community physical acivity. As 18 percent of West Virginia kindergartners arrive at school obese, West Virginia children are sending up clear red flags of future diabetes and heart disease.

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Children at risk identified, but who follows up?

Since 1998, West Virginia University’s CARDIAC program  has identified thousands of West Virginia fifth-graders with very high blood pressure, risky cholesterol and obesity – early warning signs of diabetes, heart disease, and stroke – but no state agency has ever followed up on those children.

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“We can beat this” / Health experts say W.Va. can lower its high disease numbers

West Virginia occupies a top slot on almost every awful health ranking: diabetes, heart disease, stroke, kidney disease and others. If the state’s top leaders will put health care on the front burner, that can change, an array of state leaders say.

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EDITORIAL: W.Va. can turn its health misfortunes around

Health statistics suggest that there are children alive today who will live shorter lives than their parents because of the habits they are learning now — the foods they are conditioned to prefer, the lack of opportunities to form lifelong exercise habits. That can be changed through awareness and support. Continue reading

What happened? When / how / why did W.Va. pack on the pounds? / A look back in history.

At the turn of the 20th century, West Virginians were described as a lean ‘stomachless’ people. Now West Virginia leads the nation in obesity and diabetes. What changed? And what can we do?

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Five days a week: Daily activity is affordable, Department of Education says

As the obesity epidemic mushrooms, a national movement grows to get kids moving five days a week by adding physical activities on days when kids don’t have physical education. If paraprofessionals lead activities, it doesn’t have to be expensive, fitness proponents say.

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