NHM Health Focus: Healthy
Heres a frightening (and confusing) thought: As the average weight
of people in the United States continues to climb (as much as two
pounds per year according to some accounts), increasing numbers
cases are being seen in both men and women.
Weight Week "is an annual, national observance that focuses
attention on the importance of staying at a healthy weight. This is
especially important now that more Americans than ever are overweight.
According to the U.S. Surgeon General's Call
to Action to Prevent and Decrease Overweight and Obesity ..., approximately
300,000 adult deaths in the United States each year can be attributed
to unhealthy dietary habits and physical inactivity or sedentary behavior."
In our quest for information about selecting and maintaining healthy
weight, we may find ourselves confronted by methods that may do more
harm than good. Tips on how to detect and avoid fraudulent "get
healthy" schemes can be found at Quackwatch,
Healthy Weight Network,
National Council Against Health Fraud,
and Diet Reviews
among others. Each year the Slim
Chance Awards highlight some of the worst offenders.
On the positive side, Weight-control
Information Network provides the general public, health professionals,
the media, and Congress with up-to-date, science-based information on
weight control, obesity, physical activity, and related nutritional
A recently published review
of 1,500 weight loss studies and of 10 commercial or self-help programs
evidence that formal weight loss programs help. Experts do have
that will help motivated dieters succeed.
U.S. National Institutes
of Health and Dietitians - Canada,
have posted quizzes and other resources designed to help individuals
assess their current levels of exercise, body mass, and perception of
appropriate portion sizes, and to move toward a healthier life style
in the New Year.
Access Excellence @ the National Health Museum has
these resources related to healthy weight: