National Weight-Loss Campaign Seeks To Encourage Blacks to Collectively Lose 50M Pounds in Six Months
Fitness expert and physician Ian Smith on Saturday in Washington, D.C., will begin a nationwide campaign that seeks to encourage blacks to collectively lose 50 million pounds within the next six months, the Washington Post reports. Nearly four in five black women in the U.S. are considered overweight or obese -- the highest rate of any group, according to the Post. Smith said that if 25% of the 20 million blacks in the U.S. considered overweight or obese lost 10 pounds each, the campaign's challenge of losing 50 million pounds can be met. Smith said he wants to address the issue among blacks on a national level because obesity rates in the black community "are unimaginable," adding, "It's not just (an individual's) problem. It's a problem for all of us." Saturday's kick-off for the 50 Million Pound Challenge will feature celebrity guests and performers, including Patti LaBelle; a one-mile walk; and health screenings. Participants also will have no-cost access to a Web site, 50millionpounds.com, which includes an individual weight-loss tracker, diet and nutrition tips, and recipes. Smith will lead similar launch events in Baltimore; Detroit; Memphis, Tenn.; Oakland, Calif.; and other cities. The National Medical Association and other organizations have endorsed the campaign, and State Farm Insurance is sponsoring it (Levine, Washington Post, 4/5).This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news organizations. Sign up for an email subscription.