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eusebius

Obesity & Poor Community Design?

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Just ran across this article today. The link between civic design and obesity got me thinking...is this for real, or just hogwash? Thought I'd post here to get some objective feedback. If this subject is not appropriate, please accept my apologies...

I found it interesting that poor community design is indicated as a contributor to obesity. Sure, it may play *some* role, but can it really be considered a leading cause? I don't think so. Moreover, does TN's high ranking of adult obesity (5th in US) indicate a "lack of significant policies addressing community design issues"? Have we built our communities to encourage people to be overweight? Again - I think not. So most folks drive to the grocery store; that doesn't prohibit them from taking a walk around the block after dinner, does it?

http://healthyamericans.org/reports/obesit....php?StateID=TN

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I think community design plays a very small role in the obesity. The diets, lack of exercise, and personal lifestyle choices are what drive the obesity rate IMO. If you want to be fit, your enviroment does very little to prohibit you from being so (as far as one's ability to eat properly, do some sort of phyiscal activity, etc).

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People are often just fat and lazy. They eat the wrong foods, get little exercise, etc.

I do remember, though, when I moved to NYC. I lost 30 pounds in just under 6 weeks. Walking cities are great, but the design of our typical cities isn't going to affect enough people to take care of the problem itself. No one's gonna walk to WalMart if they dont' have to. People are responsible, for the most part, for how widely they open their mouths...and what they put in them. It is an interesting point. In places like NYC, especially Manhattan, obese people are just don't seem to be anywhere around.

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I think the rise is obesity is related to our over reliance on cars. Our cities are designed for cars with little regard for any other form of transportation. And our reliance on cars seems to be increasing. When I was young, I never ever remember seeing a drive thru business. Now we we have drive thru everything! The rate of obesity i s much lower in New York City than anywhere in the South. I have a daughter who lives there, and I always notice how thin the general populace seems there when I visit. People will have to get off their duff and start walking again for us to see a major improvement. I do think that a city can play a role in this process by developing a fer reaching urban plan that promotes less reliance on cars and more reliance on walking. :rolleyes:

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I agree with all...obesity is a result of a sedentary lifestyle and thus anything that discourages walking in favor or a drive plays a minor role. Since moving to d'town a month and 1/2 ago I have dropped 15lbs just walking around the city. When they actually build a grocery in the city I will be able to walk and have my cake...wait for it...wait for it...and eat it to. ba ba bom :sick:

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In addition to walking more, many people in New York also avoid "fast foods." In my opinion, the drive-through window is definitely a contributing factor related to community design.

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I just got my breakfast here at work and noticed what some of the rotund had ordered. Eggs covered in gravy, plate of tator tots, piles of bacon....and then they (three of them) took the elevator. This is only a two-story building. Hmmmmm.

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That's funny, Dave..same thing here - a co-worker who is "trying really hard to lose weight" with not 1, but 2 McGriddles. But seriously, though - it's all about a gazillion (yea, that's a precise count) choices we make everyday. I'd just like to know that my city provides me with that choice. On a typical weekday, I wake up before 4 am, walk the dog, go for a run, take the bus to work, walk about 3/4 mile to the office (all sidewalks), take the stairs, etc. I'm glad I have these options, and I actively choose to partake. Living close to town affords me those options. When my co-worker who lives in Ashland City complains about "the bulge", and going to the gym is such an inconvenience, i tell him that I'm able to keep in shape with simple "choices"...well, he just shrugs his shoulders and says he doesn't have those options.

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Of course...community design has alot to do with obesity rates as many have already said. Why else do you think our country is far and away the most suburban oriented AND the most obese? The availability of fast food is practically everywhere on the planet these days, and food culture has little to do with it. Sure the south has ribs and fried chicken, but look at what cities in the north have! Philly Cheese Steak, Chicago Style Pizza, Coney Island Dog, Lobster Roll anybody?

Some could be attributed to laziness...absolutely...but community design also plays a big role in determining what 'lazy' is. Proper community design should discourage car use for short trips, and make walking the more convenient option of the two. Nobody is going to want to talk in a typical sprawl-burb, and that is the point. A well designed community should encourage walking and not driving and we have little of the former in this country. Honestly, why else do you think obesity rates are strikingly lower in our more urban cities? HINT: It has little to do with there being more health food available!

Hopefully Tennessee and the rest of the country is starting to reach its peak in obesity. I'm sure this "gas crisis" will definitely help out in bringing down the obesity rates as well if it lasts long enough.

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I think community design plays a very small role in the obesity.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

I think it plays no role in making people fat.

Look at a graph that shows the number of out-of-wedlock births, number of high school dropouts and the number of fat people in Nashville and you see overlapping lines.

People are thinner in NYC because they can't afford to eat a lot, they are always running from criminals, they are always sick from breathing polluted city air and the beathing the germ cloud of the person in the seat next to them on the subway.

How about proper planning to encourage people to vote Repubican so they will stop wasting their lives on sex, drugs and rock and roll?

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I think it plays no role in making people fat.

Look at a graph that shows the number of out-of-wedlock births, number of high school dropouts and the number of fat people in Nashville and you see overlapping lines.

People are thinner in NYC because they can't afford to eat a lot, they are always running from criminals, they are always sick from breathing polluted city air and the beathing the germ cloud of the person in the seat next to them on the subway.

How about proper planning to encourage people to vote Repubican so they will stop wasting their lives on sex, drugs and rock and roll?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Funny how the red states are fat, isn't it?

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Funny how the red states are fat, isn't it?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Not so funny. It makes sense really.

Red state people are more successful because they work hard, follow the law and concentrate on being good citizens. I guess they have the money to buy all the food they want.

Blue states, having the highest concentration of liberals, are more concerned with conspicuous compassionism, sex, drugs and rock and roll. Those people, who can't eat well because they spent too much time "partying" to emulate the wealthy entertainment celebrities and not enough time getting an education and a work ethic, will probably die at an equal rate from SDSs and drug overdoses as productive fat blue state people. So mortality rates are probably equal.

So take your pick. Skinny criminals and drug addicts or fat, law abiding, productive citizens.

I'm glad I live in a red state. Red states control the government.

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Not so funny.  It makes sense really.

Red state people are more successful because they work hard, follow the law and concentrate on being good citizens.  I guess they have the money to buy all the food they want.

Blue states, having the highest concentration of liberals, are more concerned with conspicuous compassionism, sex, drugs and rock and roll.  Those people, who can't eat well because they spent too much time "partying" to emulate the wealthy entertainment celebrities and not enough time getting an education and a work ethic, will probably die at an equal rate from SDSs and drug overdoses as productive fat blue state people.  So mortality rates are probably equal.

So take your pick.  Skinny criminals and drug addicts or fat, law abiding, productive citizens.

I'm glad I live in a red state.  Red states control the government.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

oh thats just plain silly. the blue states are just as productive as the red states. the country isnt as split as the media makes it out to be. take any political science course and you'll realize this.

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I think it plays no role in making people fat.

Look at a graph that shows the number of out-of-wedlock births, number of high school dropouts and the number of fat people in Nashville and you see overlapping lines.

People are thinner in NYC because they can't afford to eat a lot, they are always running from criminals, they are always sick from breathing polluted city air and the beathing the germ cloud of the person in the seat next to them on the subway.

How about proper planning to encourage people to vote Repubican so they will stop wasting their lives on sex, drugs and rock and roll?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

This is a joke, right? As someone from a red state who now lives in New York City, your characterization of New York and New Yorkers is seriously mistaken. In Manhattan, people are thinner because instead of driving, they walk everywhere. We climb stairs to get out of the subway, many of us live in walk-up buildings and of my friends, all of them work out on a regular basis and disdain fast food in favor of the wide range of cuisine offerings throughout the city.

As far as crime goes, New York has consistently been the safest large city (ie. city with more than 1 million people) in the US for years. This year it ranked 5th safest among cities w/ more than 500,000 people. Interestingly, close to half of the "overall" most dangerous cities are in the Southern (including FL) red states. Of the overall safest cities, Cary, NC was the only representative from a Southern red state. http://www.morganquitno.com/cit05pop.htm#25

I will grant that NY, as does virtually every other US metro area, has a problem with pollution, but cities like Houston and LA are consistently battling worse smog. As far as sex, drugs and rock-n-roll go, what source are you citing that says that NYers "waste their lives on sex, drugs and rock and roll?"

Anyway, while you're touting the virtues of living in a red state, under a Republican controlled federal government, you might want to cite a couple of other statistics that I think will clearly justify your righteousness and moral superiority to all of us NYers and blue-staters...under the Bush Administration, the number of people living in poverty increased for the 4th straight year and 9 out of the 10 states with the highest divorce rates are red-states. The state with the lowest divorce rate is probably among your favorites - it's that liberal bastion of intelligent people who grant equal rights to their gay neighbors - Massachusetts.

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Funny isn't it, how red states, in addition to being fatter, also have more crime and lower income levels?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Not so funny when you consider the effect the liberal entertainment media has on every part of the country.

Maybe the difference could be explained by the fact that blue states tend to have higher abortion rates and kill their unproductive citizens while red states have more teen parents. Teen parents don't have many recourses to fight the liberal influences that got them where they are and that will eventually harmfully affect their children.

Why would anyone choose to promote the blue state values of sexual promiscuity, drugs and other forms of hedonism over the red state values of sobriety, family and civic responsibility? I guess the blue states need the red state market to buy their cultural garbage so the blue states citizens don't have to live in the world they created.

Kinda of like how Marlboro sells more cigarettes to third world countries than to Americans.

I guess the blue state counter-culture marketers think it is better to make money peddling their poison across town that it is to poison their own neighbors.

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People are thinner in NYC because they can't afford to eat a lot, they are always running from criminals, they are always sick from breathing polluted city air and the beathing the germ cloud of the person in the seat next to them on the subway.

How about proper planning to encourage people to vote Repubican so they will stop wasting their lives on sex, drugs and rock and roll?

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

you are kidding, aren't you?

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  The state with the lowest divorce rate is probably among your favorites - it's that liberal bastion of intelligent people who grant equal rights to their gay neighbors - Massachusetts.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Hmm, I guess people who never get married never get divorced. The gays in MA have more rights - not equal rights.

What is the re-marriage rate among the divorced people in Massachusetts? I guess you agree with me that it should be difficult to get married and even more difficult to get a divorce.

I agree, people should not get divorced. I might help if they didn't listen to blue state social theory that believes in "open" marrage, excuse fornication as sexual self-expression and oral sex and not sex.

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No.  I am a former New Yorker.  I know what I am talking about.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Well, it's such a relief to know that you can speak for me and all of my fellow New Yorkers. It does however sadden me to realize that me and my lot are vapid, un-productive hedonists...but, who am I to dispute your the authority because you "know what you're talking about."

Someone else who knows a thing or two (and if you want to discredit him, I'll give you a hint - he's an intellectual educated at Oxford and an Ivy League institution - but, to his credit he tends to side with the conservatives), Andrew Sullivan would refute your claim that Massachusetts residents don't get married, therefore don't get divorced. In fact, in Texas, one of the top ten divorce states, the percent of married people is less than Massachusetts by about 5-1/2%. Check it out at:

http://www.andrewsullivan.com/main_article...artnum=20041128 Your other claim of gay people having more "rights" than straight people in Massachusetts is totally unfounded.

More importantly, however, Mr. Sullivan notes (as a previous poster on this forum did as well), this country is far too complex and diverse to be divided along a red state/blue state fault line. And so, obesity is not only an affliction of red-staters, just as sexual promiscuity and drug addiction are not the sole province of blue-staters (see Rush Limbaugh, Bill O'Reilly, Clarence Thomas, etc.). That, my friend, is what makes this country interesting. Everyone's a hypocrite and a mess, but don't listen to me, I just live here.

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:rofl:

Either you think you're a comedian, or you are the biggest dumbass i've ever encountered.  I hope for your sake that it is the former.  I don't even mean that as an insult, because if infact you aren't joking, you are an extremely...almost sickly ignorant person and for your sake you need to get help...or read a book...ASAP.  Seriously.

<{POST_SNAPBACK}>

Agreed.

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...you are the biggest dumbass i've ever encountered....you are an extremely...almost sickly ignorant person and for your sake you need to get help...or read a book...ASAP.

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Well, it's such a relief to know that you can speak for me and all of my fellow New Yorkers. 

I never said that I speak for you or any New Yorker besides myself.

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