Communities urged to take action to increase physical activity

The rapidly increasing obesity rate among American adults and children is more and more being called and "epidemic" by public health authorities--and one with serious and long-lasting public health consequences.

The way are communities are planned, organized, and operated contributes a great deal to this problem. Public health authorities are challenging communities to do something about it:

"Overweight and obesity are among the most pressing new health challenges we face today," [Health and Human Services] Secretary Tommy G. Thompson said. "Our modern environment has allowed these conditions to increase at alarming rates and become a growing health problem for our nation. By confronting these conditions, we have tremendous opportunities to prevent the unnecessary disease and disability they portend for our future." . . .

When there are no safe places for children to play, or for adults to walk, jog, or ride a bike, that's a community responsibility.

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