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Obesity plagues Kings County

July 6, 2009
by Eiji Yamashita
The Sentinel

Their love for pork rinds, super-size soft drinks and ice cream isn't helping adult Kings County residents get any leaner, prompting health officials to warn more urgently: eat less and exercise. Even as California as a whole scored a low adult obesity rate in a recently released nationwide obesity study, Kings County and other Valley counties are still wrestling with some of the state's highest adult obesity rates -- ones that could rival those of America's fattest states, such as Mississippi, Alabama and West Virginia.

"As far as risk factors for disabilities and early deaths, it's probably the No. 1 issue that faces Kings County as a cause," said Dr. Mac Lean, Kings County's health officer.

California has the 10th lowest rate of adult obesity in the nation, with 23.6 percent of adult residents classified as obese by the U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention, according to the annual ranking of obesity rates in U.S. states released this week by the Trust for America's Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation.

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