WDAY: The News Leader

Published February 01, 2010, 10:51 AM

New mission to fight obesity epidemic

(WDAY TV) - The USDA office has a new mission, fighting the obesity epidemic.

By: WDAY Staff Reports, WDAY

Congressman Earl Pomeroy was in Grand Forks today to help kick off the new mission.

Before today, the United State Human Nutrition Lab only studied obesity as a small part of its work. Now, it will be the focus, specifically on how exercise and nutrition can reduce disease.

Scientists at the center say obesity is directly related to diabetes, cancer, and other diseases and by studying ways to make dieting and exercise easier for people by making new guidelines, the hope is to reduce obesity in the country.

“You've got major disease implications. In fact it's estimated that there's a 140-billion dollars in health expenditures each year, directly related to medical conditions people get as a consequence of their obesity.”

Pomeroy says obesity is even worse in rural areas like North Dakota, especially on Indian reservations, where he says obesity is even more of a problem.