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Alternative Ways to Avoid Obesity

Fun activities for a healthy lifestyle

by Elizabeth Olson and Catherine McNiff

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The United States National Center for Health Statistics released a report in 2012 indicating that more than 68% of Americans are overweight, obese, or extremely obese. Even more disturbing are results showing that the percentage of obese Americans 20 years and older rose from 15% to 35% between 1980 and 2010.

In 2013, obesity is still a problem in the U.S. In fact, the weight of our nation, and especially the rounding of our children, has become a hot topic in the Oval Office.

Get Moving

An anti-obesity initiative, Let’s Move!, was launched by First Lady Michelle Obama in Feb. 2010. During her speech introducing the program, Obama explained her mission to combat the “epidemic of childhood obesity in America” which has caused a tripling of youth obesity rates over the last three decades, and has left one in three children overweight or obese. The First Lady wants to turn this tide so that the children born today will grow into adulthood free of high cholesterol, diabetes, high blood pressure, and chronic disease—all negative health problems that are linked with being overweight.

Five Steps to Success

1. Improving childhood nutrition through education

2. Empowering parents and caregivers through improving nutritional information in food marketing

3. Healthy food in schools based on the new food guidelines provided by MyPlate

4. Access to healthy, affordable food at reasonable prices

5. Increasing physical activity at school, at home, and in the community

What You Can Do

Have fun! Engaging in sports and incorporating physical activity into your lifestyle can help diminish the prevalence of obesity and help family bonding. The following list includes fun indoor and outdoor activities to avoid weight gain without having to go to the gym, according to the weather.

Cold Weather ActivitiesCalories Burned per hour*
Snow shoeing563
Ice skating493
Cross-country skiing563
Downhill skiing422
Shoveling snow422
Warm Weather Activities
Kayaking352
Swimming422
Gardening352
Tennis493
Anytime Activities
Take the stairs instead of the elevator563
Adventure vacation varies
Rock climbing700
Yoga298
Set up an exercise program on the Wii Fitvaries

* Calories burned per hour for moderate activity of persons that weigh 155 lbs.

Information Please® Database, © 2009 Pearson Education, Inc. All rights reserved.

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