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Fight Against Obesity Takes Off! 16 Mayors and More Than 80 Cities Take Steps Toward Wellness
Date:9/21/2009

NEW YORK, Sept. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- The tallies are in and it's official: Americans are taking the Challenge to fight obesity! In an exceptional demonstration of grassroots activism, Dr. Ian Smith and the 50 Million Pound Challenge united thousands of Americans across the country to take control of their health and turn the tide once and for all on the country's number one health problem.

On September 12, 16 city governments and 6,000 people in more than 80 cities across the country took to the streets, parks and malls as part of Dr. Ian Smith's first annual 50 Million Pound Challenge Walk Off. Participants logged 12,000 miles and burned an estimated 1.2 million calories, taking proactive steps toward community-supported wellness. The Walk Off couldn't have come at a better time. Health care is at the top of President Obama's agenda and, according to a recent report by the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, obesity-related costs account for $147 billion in annual health care expenditures.

"This is a watershed event in the fight against obesity," said Dr. Ian Smith, who walked in Richmond, VA, with Mayor Dwight Jones on Saturday. "Right in the middle of the health care reform debate and news that obesity-related costs are crippling budgets locally and nationally, communities came together in support of wellness. We put down the junk food and tasted success. Now America's charge is to capitalize on the momentum and grow the Challenge larger still."

Dr. Ian Smith, founder and creator of The 50 Million Pound Challenge and New York Times bestselling author of The 4 Day Diet intends to keep the momentum going, empowering fellow citizens to make wellness a personal and local priority. Individuals and teams can join the fight at 50MillionPounds.com. The 50 Million Po
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SOURCE State Farm
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