SuperTalk Mississippi

Obesity summit simulcast to William Carey University

photo courtesy of TeleSouth Communications Inc

William Carey University is working with the National Diabetes and Obesity Research Institute and with the Cleveland Clinic in an effort to find new strategies for diabetes, obesity and cardiovascular disease management.

The Obesity Summit was simulcast from Cleveland, Ohio to the Mississippi Gulf Coast and was done in an effort to attract a diverse mix of healthcare practitioners interested in learning more about the causes of obesity, diabetes care, preventive strategies, and therapeutic management approaches.

“I think the basic issue starts around prevention and so much of the prevention is around eating and exercise and keeping one’s weight under control,” said Dr. Toby Cosgrove President and CEO of the Cleveland Clinic in Cleveland, Ohio. “If you manage to keep your weight under control, the incidents of diabetes go way down and the complications get avoided.”

Cosgrove said they are trying to improve the knowledge and the techniques across the state with the various healthcare providers.

“We have put out a big push at the Cleveland Clinic amongst our employees there to exercise and eat properly and over time we have lost more than 500,000 pounds collectively as a group,” said Cosgrove. “That has reduced our medical expenses and I’ve got a healthier population.”

Cosgrove said that Governor Bryant reached out to them to start the conversation of improving the state’s obesity epidemic.

“The Governor is passionate about this,” said Cosgrove. “He had lost a mother from the ravages of diabetes and he sees the influence of diabetes and obesity on the state, the financial implicates and what they need to do in terms of cost and care.”

Cosgrove encouraged people dealing with obesity or potential obesity to walk 10,000 steps a day, avoid the sugary drinks, eat properly and exercise daily.

“I think this is an important issue and if you look at obesity across the country it is accounting for 10% of the healthcare costs in the United States,” said Cosgrove. “We wouldn’t be having these discussions in Washington about how we are going to pay for healthcare if, in fact, we didn’t have this epidemic of obesity.”

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