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Florida Ranked 12th Healthiest Weight in Nation

By Florida Department of Health, Office of Communications

August 21, 2013

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
August 21, 2013

Contact: Communications Office
(850) 245-4111

FLORIDA RANKED 12th HEALTHIEST WEIGHT IN NATION
~ Healthiest Weight Florida initiative gaining momentum ~

TALLAHASSEE—Healthiest Weight Florida was launched in January 2013 by the Florida Department of Health in response to Florida’s number one threat to public health—the challenge of weight. The initiative is gaining momentum and Florida now has the 12th healthiest weight in the nation, up from a previous rank of 19th.

“With only 35% of Floridians at a healthy weight, we recognize the continuing urgency of our weight challenge,” said State Surgeon General and Secretary of Health Dr. John Armstrong. “Florida is making progress relative to other states, yet sustained effort is essential to bend the weight curve. The Healthiest Weight Florida initiative intends to secure a healthier future for Florida’s children, adults, families, businesses, and communities.”

The new ranking comes from the report F as in Fat: How Obesity Threatens America's Future 2013, which was released by the Trust for America's Health (TFAH) and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF). According to the report, Florida’s obesity rate for baby boomers is almost 31 percent while the rate for seniors in Florida is just under 23 percent. The obesity rate among young adults (18-to 25-year-olds) in Florida is nearly 15 percent.

The Healthiest Weight Florida initiative focuses on collaboration across state agencies, local not-forprofits, private organizations and others to help people make more informed choices about healthy nutrition and physical activity. Through partnerships, the initiative promotes community-based strategies to improve school, workplace, food and beverage, physical activity, and messaging environments.

The F as in Fat report calls for the expansion of policies at every level to support healthy choices and for increased investment in prevention. The report acknowledges that at current rates the estimated ongoing costs to the healthcare system are unsustainable. On Florida’s current trend, the costs of care for four chronic diseases from obesity alone—diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, and arthritis—are estimated to be $34B over the next 17 years.

To learn more about this collaborative statewide effort, visit www.HealthiestWeightFL.com. Read the full report at www.fasinfat.org.

DOH protects, promotes and improves the health of all people in Florida through integrated state, county and community efforts.

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