Think About It: Health Tipped - KFVE, K5-Hawaii News Now, Local Programming

December 12, 2011

Think About It: Health Tipped

Yes, Hawaii ranked as the 4th healthiest state in the country this year, up one slot from 2010. And yes, Hawaii has been a consistent top 10 healthiest state over the past 20-years in these annual United Health Foundation rankings. But being a relatively healthy state does not mean we can let our guard down.

According to the report, 153,000 adults still smoke in Hawaii. Obesity in Hawaii now affects almost one quarter of our population, up 4% since 2006. That means that there are 244,000 obese adults in Hawaii. And that statistic does not count the overweight kids. Diabetes, while still comparatively low in Hawaii is at 8%. And perhaps most startling, the 2011 report indicates that the number of children under the age of 18 living in poverty here has gone from 10% of the population to almost 19% over the last five years.

We need to watch what we eat and what we feed our kids. But we need to make sure our kids are fed, and fed right. Poverty can lead to the onset of diseases through lack of attention and lack of nutrition. We also have a higher than normal incidence of infectious disease combined with low immunization coverage and a high level of binge drinking- all of which needs to be and can be corrected if people consistently work at these issues. While it's great to be recognized as a healthy state for many reasons, there is still a lot of work to be done, and it all starts at home. Awareness is great- but action is even better. Think about it…

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