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Blue Cross Launches Statewide Healthy Eating Campaign to Double Number of Minnesotans Eating Fruits, Veggies
Date:11/6/2008

First-of-its kind effort tackles unhealthy eating to improve health, reduce

health care costs

EAGAN, Minn., Nov. 6 /PRNewswire/ -- Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota (Blue Cross) is launching a statewide healthy eating campaign to improve Minnesotans' health and double the percentage of people who eat five or more fruits and vegetable servings each day. Currently more than 80 percent of Minnesotans fail to get the recommended amount of fruits and vegetables putting them at risk for serious health problems including heart disease, cancer, obesity, and diabetes.

Research shows that eating more fruits and vegetables has multiple health benefits -- it protects against heart disease and cancer, helps control diabetes and weight, lowers cholesterol and blood pressure, and reduces the likelihood of heart attack or stroke.

"Our campaign is designed to bring attention to the benefits of healthy eating and make it easier to eat the way we know we should," said Dr. Marc Manley, vice president and medical director for population health at Blue Cross. "This is crucial work because approximately two-thirds of adult Minnesotans are overweight or obese, and changing our eating habits is a significant step we can take to improve health and lower health care costs."

The benefits of this healthy eating work will translate into healthier Minnesotans and will help save health care dollars for everyone. According to a report on obesity issued by Blue Cross and the Minnesota Department of Health earlier this year, if trends continue unchecked, obesity will add nearly $1 billion to Minnesota's total health care costs by 2010, and $3.7 billion by 2020. More importantly, thousands of lives will be lost or negatively impacted by devastating diseases like heart disease and cancer. "Obesity is a multi-billion dollar problem for Minnesota -- every step we take to reduce those costs and improve health means saving lives and money,
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SOURCE Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Minnesota
Copyright©2008 PR Newswire.
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