Obesity is An Expensive Issue

(3BL Media/Justmeans) - America spends over $160 billion annually on obesity-related medical costs. This figure is expected to double by 2018. Obesity treatment represents a significant portion of the $2.5 trillion total spent on health and wellness across the country. Now, more than ever, solutions are needed to tackle this growing issue (no pun intended). The U.S. has the second highest obesity rate in the world, after Mexico.

There are lots of individual costs too, that make obesity an expensive issue as there’s lost life, lost wages and life insurance; obese men spend $2,646 extra per year, while obese women pay $4,879 extra per year. Moreover, obese men and women are paid less than their professional healthier counterparts. Overweight women are particularly affected, earning 11 per cent less than their healthy counterparts.

Working hard to change things for the next generation is GENYOUth Foundation, a not-for-profit dedicated to improving nutrition and physical activity in U.S. schools. It has now just received a multi-year, $3 million-dollar commitment from SAP, a leading technology and innovation company.  SAP’s investment will support youth entrepreneurship and efforts to improve school health through GENYOUth's AdVenture Capital, a creative social entrepreneurship program that inspires, empowers and funds youth-led initiatives to drive new and original ways for improving nutrition and physical activity in schools nationwide. 

AdVenture Capital is offered to students participating in GENYOUth's flagship program Fuel Up to Play 60, the largest in-school health and wellness program in the country, developed by the National Football League and National Dairy Council, in collaboration with the U.S. Department of Agriculture. SAP’s money will allow more students to bring their ideas to life and inspire healthy, modern and physical activity in the 73,000 schools participating in Fuel Up to Play 60 nationwide. By applying the principles of entrepreneurial investment to the challenge of school wellness, young people participating in AdVenture Capital will be enabled to identify solutions, "pitch" their ideas for potential funding and implementation, and develop life-long skills of leadership, communication and commitment to service.  

SAP employee volunteers will take part in mentoring the students, providing guidance in the execution of their projects. SAP recognises that supporting young entrepreneurs is at the core to make the world run better and improve people's lives. To be great business people these young people need to live healthier, more active lives.

Photocredit: Wikimedia