Saturday, October 02, 2004

Physical Inactivity Cost Calculator

Physical inactivity, as described by the Surgeon General, is less than 30 minutes of moderate
physical activity most, if not all, days of the week. The Cost Calculator allows a business city or state to quantify the cost of physical inactivity.

? Two-thirds of Americans are officially overweight, up from
half just 20 years ago
? In 2000, the health costs of overweight and obesity were
estimated at $117 billion
? Physical inactivity contributes to numerous physical and
mental health problems and is responsible for an estimated
200,000 deaths per year.? A national study of 448 metropolitan counties found that
people living in sprawling, low-density counties walk less,
weigh more and are more likely to be obese or have
hypertension than peoplel iving in more compact counties.

? Plan and design communities that foster walking and biking
? Create “complete streets” that allow for physical activity
and have a network of sidewalks, paths and trails
? Ensure access for all to well-maintained parks, trails and
recreational facilities
? Support healthy school environments, including
neighborhood schools rather than regional schools,
mandatory PE classes and safe routes to school