HEALTH

Adult obesity rates rise in 28 states, report finds

BY Michael Johnsen

WASHINGTON Adult obesity rates increased in 28 states in the past year, and declined only in the District of Columbia, according to "F as in Fat: How Obesity Threatens America’s Future 2010," a report from the Trust for America’s Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation released Tuesday.

More than two-thirds of states (38) have adult obesity rates above 25%. In 1991, no state had an obesity rate above 20%.

Adult obesity rates for African-Americans and Hispanics were higher than for whites in at least 40 states and the District of Columbia; 10-out-of-the-11 states with the highest rates of obesity were in the South, with Mississippi weighing in with the highest rates for all adults (33.8%) for the sixth year in a row; 35.3% of adults earning less than $15,000 per year were obese, compared with 24.5% of adults earning $50,000 or more per year.

"Obesity is one of the biggest public health challenges the country has ever faced, and troubling disparities exist based on race, ethnicity, region and income," stated Jeffrey Levi, executive director of TFAH. "This report shows that the country has taken bold steps to address the obesity crisis in recent years, but the nation’s response has yet to fully match the magnitude of the problem. Millions of Americans still face barriers — like the high cost of healthy foods and lack of access to safe places to be physically active — that make healthy choices challenging."

The report also included obesity rates among youths between the ages of 10 and 17 years and the results of a new poll on childhood obesity conducted by Greenberg Quinlan Rosner Research and American Viewpoint. The poll showed that 80% of Americans recognize that childhood obesity is a significant and growing challenge for the country, and 50% of Americans believe childhood obesity is such an important issue that we need to immediately invest more to prevent it. The survey also found that 84% of parents believe their children are at a healthy weight, but research showed nearly one-third of children and teens are obese or overweight.

 

Additional key findings included:

  • Adult obesity rates for African-Americans topped 40% in nine states, 35% in 34 states, and 30% in 43 states and D.C.;
  • Rates of adult obesity for Latinos were above 35% in two states (North Dakota and Tennessee), and at 30% and above in 19 states;
  • Ten-of-the-11 states with the highest rates of diabetes are in the South, as are the 10 states with the highest rates of hypertension;
  • The number of states where adult obesity rates exceeded 30% doubled in the past year, from four to eight — Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Oklahoma, Tennessee and West Virginia; and
  • Northeastern and western states had the lowest adult obesity rates — Colorado remained the lowest at 19.1%.

 

 

The full report with state rankings in all categories is available on TFAH’s website at HealthyAmericans.org and RWJF’s website at RWJF.org. The report was supported by a grant from RWJF.

 

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Proantinox may reduce UTI incidence in women, study suggests

BY Michael Johnsen

EDISON, N.J. A recent study being published in the journal Urology found that Proantinox, a proprietary cranberry-based blend found in DSE Healthcare Solutions’ Cystex liquid cranberry complex with Proantinox, is safe and effective in significantly reducing the incidence of urinary tract infections in women at risk for recurring infections.

The study, conducted by Aaron Katz, professor of clinical urology at Columbia University college of physicians and surgeons, also found that those women who took the recommended doses of the formula significantly improved quality of life as measured by the American Urological Association Symptom Index.

“The objectives of this study initially were to determine the safety, tolerability and maximum dose necessary of the proprietary Proantinox formula, but the secondary finding of efficacy was so significant, we felt it was worth noting,” stated Katz. “Normally you would expect at least 32% to 36% of the participants, based on history, to have at least one more infection or UTI symptoms during the study period, but we found only 9% of the sample had this occur.”

The study looked at 28 women, ages 18 to 75 years, who had experienced at least two or more urinary tract infections in the past six months. In addition to the tolerability and efficacy findings, questionnaires were also completed at baseline, week four and week 12 to measure overall health and quality of life based on the AUA Symptom Index.

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Perrigo gains OTC rights for generic Allegra products

BY Michael Johnsen

ALLEGAN, Mich. Perrigo on Tuesday announced that it has acquired the exclusive U.S. store brand rights to sell and distribute OTC versions of fexofenadine HCl 180 mg and 60 mg tabs, plus fexofenadine HCl 60 mg and pseudoephedrine 120 mg tabs, the generic versions of Sanofi-Aventis’ Allegra and Allegra D-12 products, respectively.

Allegra 180 mg, 60 mg, and Allegra D-12 are indicated for the relief of symptoms associated with seasonal allergies. Sanofi-Aventis has applied to the Food and Drug Administration for the Rx-to-OTC switch of these drugs, even going so far as to acquire OTC supplier Chattem as an in-house distribution arm for the allergy medicine.

It is assumed Allegra will be approved for its switch OTC, especially as an FDA advisory committee in 2001 recommended Allegra be eligible for switch.

Prior to generic competition entering the fexofenadine Rx market in 2005, Allegra 180 mg and 60 mg had combined annual sales of approximately $1.5 billion, and in 2009, Allegra D-12 had annual sales of $600 million according to data provided by Wolters-Kluwer.

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