Friday, January 15, 2010

Haiti Tragedy

It is a very sad news of Haiti's earthquake. What Krugman says is also what I really want to say: As far as one can tell, those with the power to help are doing all they can. One can only hope that enough help arrives fast enough to avoid the second-round calamities — deaths due to lack of food and water and/or disease — that can all too easily follow a natural disaster.

It also reminds us of the Kobe-Awaji earthquake that happened 15 years ago.

American Obesity

WSJ says on 13/01/2010 that:

WASHINGTON—One-third of American adults are obese, according to new U.S. government figures released Wednesday, but the rate of increase seen in recent decades has slowed.

Figures from the National Center for Health Statistics showed 34% of American adults age 20 and older were obese in 2007-08 while 68% were considered overweight or obese. In children ages 2 through 19, 17% were considered obese while 32% were considered overweight. Broadly, the figures are similar to rates seen in 1999-2000.

"Obesity remains high and is a significant public-health problem in the U.S.," said Cynthia Ogden, one of the main researchers involved in tabulating the data and an epidemiologist with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's health-statistics unit.

..."I see this as relatively good news," said William Dietz, the director of CDC's division of nutrition, physical activity and obesity. "It suggests we've halted the progression of the epidemic."...."The administration recognizes that control of obesity is related to health reform," Dr. Dietz said.

The obesity figures were taken from 5,555 adults and nearly 4,000 children who are considered representative of the U.S. population. For adults, researchers looked at body mass index, a measure that estimates body fat by using a person's height and weight in the calculation. Those with BMIs of 25 to 29.9 are considered overweight and those who are considered obese have a BMI of 30 or greater. A BMI of 18.5 to 24.9 is considered a normal weight for adults.

Interestingly, we can see this article in the site of Yahoo JAPAN! although it is a piece of the American news that doesn't seem to have anything to do with our own life. I'm not sure how many Japanese are obese and what growth rate of obese Japanese we have seen for the past decades, but I'm sure it is not other people's affairs.

We have already lived a civilized life here for long: the foods we eat are more similar or closer to those the American eat, and we do less exercise for long and so do they. Our life style becomes quite closer to American one. I think we need to take a good look at the data of obesity in America for good reference.

Friday, January 01, 2010

Herd Society

We are the same as monkeys.