Our Big Problem

Alabama has plenty of problems. There’s one problem, however, many of us can see every time we look in a mirror.

The below stories encompass an occasional series examining the spread of obesity and related health problems in Alabama, and the bigger questions facing our society as a result.
Teach it to the children
For those wanting to shed a few excess pounds, it’s common for change to mimic a snail’s pace. Progress can be frustratingly slow. It doesn’t matter if you’re a 50-year-old man or a fifth-grade child.
Sep 18, 2012 |  0 comments | 40 40 recommendations | email to a friend
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Boot camp a weight-loss option for area kids
About 80 people have signed up for the boot camp through Facebook, and Anniston pediatric nurse practitioner Chase Thomas hopes they’ll commit to the full program, and not drop out after the first session or two.
Sep 17, 2012 |  0 comments | 57 57 recommendations | email to a friend
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Mayor-elect wants obesity task force for Anniston
Anniston Mayor-elect Vaughn Stewart says he wants to create a task force to address rising rates of obesity. Moreover, he'll likely find general agreement among members of the next Anniston City Council, regardless of who wins the Oct. 9 runoff, on the causes of the obesity problem and the city's role in helping to fix it.
Sep 10, 2012 |  0 comments | 50 50 recommendations | email to a friend
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Our long, arduous campaign
Alabamians have a long way to go before they stop garnering headlines because of their weight.
Aug 14, 2012 |  0 comments | 21 21 recommendations | email to a friend
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Bariatric surgery becoming more accepted way of handling severe, long-term weight problems
For the first time in her life, Andrea Cheeks has hope about her future, about her health. She can tell the ulcer on her leg is receding. Since her surgery in May, she no longer needs medication for cholesterol or high blood pressure.
Aug 12, 2012 |  0 comments | 27 27 recommendations | email to a friend
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Cutting weight
She needed a cane to hobble 15 steps from her apartment to her car. She used a wheelchair for anything farther than that. At 5-foot-5, Andrea Cheeks weighed 550 pounds. The Sylacauga woman couldn’t walk, couldn’t work, couldn’t shop, couldn’t leave her home without help. Couldn’t breathe sometimes. At 43, she had high blood pressure, diabetes, sleep apnea and an ulcer eating away at her leg as a result of problems with blood circulation.
Aug 12, 2012 |  0 comments | 14 14 recommendations | email to a friend
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Our Big Problem: P.E. being rethought in light of new goals for health
According to Nancy Ray, physical education and health specialist for the Alabama Department of Education, she and others involved in a PE task force have worked hard to develop the state’s first-ever comprehensive physical education guide for grades K-12.
Jul 30, 2012 |  0 comments | 20 20 recommendations | email to a friend
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Weight and see: Children's obesity clinic expected to make difference in families' lives
"I know it’s not healthy for him,” Lisa Omans, 47, said as she and Gabriel sat in the living room of their Anniston trailer on a recent morning. “But he’ll eat and 10 minutes later, he’s like, ‘I’m hungry! I’m hungry!’”
Jul 29, 2012 |  0 comments | 18 18 recommendations | email to a friend
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Complete streets: New policy encourages bike lanes, sidewalks
On the street where you live ... is there a sidewalk? Congratulations, you can get some exercise. A bike lane, however, is a different animal.
Jul 01, 2012 |  0 comments | 29 29 recommendations | email to a friend
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‘I feel like I have a life again’
Health-wise, the truth about Alabama is painful: too much obesity, too much fast and fried food, and too much diabetes.
Jun 27, 2012 |  0 comments | 12 12 recommendations | email to a friend
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