Obesity is a critical public health issue for Georgia, with approximately 30 percent of the state weighing in at an unhealthy level. Georgia currently ranks as the 17th most obese state in the nation, and many more are overweight. Diseases related to obesity continue to climb. Georgia’s diabetes rates have doubled in the past 15 years; during that same time, hypertension rates grew by 50 percent. For those living at or below the poverty level, the rates are even higher. Beyond quality of life, the cost of obesity is high. Average health-related expenses for an average person who was obese is more than $1,400 annually, not including the price of related diseases.
We will take a varied approach to combating obesity rates within the state, both through the promotion of access to healthy foods and exercise, as well as the development of proactive programs aimed at reducing the impact of obesity-related diseases. We’re currently establishing partnerships to form a multi-sector effort to address the issue of obesity from preventative measures to interventional strategies. As a kickoff to this work, we’ve launched the Live Better Coweta program. Learn more about it here.