Survey Shows Illinois Residents Who Consider Themselves Overweight or Obese Is Higher Than National Average

Monday, September 15, 2008 General News
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ADA, Mich., Sept. 15 While 93 percent of Americans reportattempting to make everyday choices to be healthy and live well, more thanhalf (55 percent) of Illinois residents say they struggle to do so, accordingto the Amway Global Wellness Index, a recent national survey of more than15,000 Americans regarding their health and wellness. Illinois residentsreport that the two main barriers preventing them from living a healthierlifestyle include lack of time (39 percent) and the costs associated witheating a balanced diet (22 percent).

Free YMCA Wellness Events

In support of individuals and families struggling to make healthierchoices, Amway Global and the YMCA are hosting free wellness events open tothe public at select YMCAs on Sept. 20, 2008, as part of America On the MoveWeek. As a first step, health seekers can go to http://www.inspirewellness.comand take the Stanford Health and Lifestyle Assessment. Then, they can bringtheir summary reports to a local YMCA to talk with a health and wellness staffmember about steps they can take toward a healthier life. Go to for a list of participating YMCAs in Illinois.

Illinois Wellness Challenges:


More than half (55 percent) of Illinois residents consider themselvesobese or overweight compared to the national average (45 percent), yet only21 percent of Illinois respondents gauge their state of wellness by theircurrent weight.


The survey shows that one-quarter (25 percent) of Illinois residents,versus 23 percent nationally, are not exercising for at least 30 minutes ormore at a time on a regular basis. That's well under the Centers for DiseaseControl (CDC) recommendation of a minimum of 30 minutes of moderate-intensityphysical activity per day or a minimum of 20 minutes of vigorous-intensityphysical activity three days a week. When it comes to the work commute,90 percent of Illinois residents drive or use public transportation. However,when they do exercise, the focus is on general wellness (35 percent),cardiovascular endurance (23 percent) and weight loss (19 percent).


Forty percent of Illinoisans report having a "very" or "somewhat" highstress level, according to the Amway Global Wellness Index. Forty-five percentof Illinois residents find that talking to family and friends is a highlyeffective way of coping with their stress. Sleeping more (32 percent) andincreasing physical activity (28 percent) also top the list, while one-quarter(25 percent) turn to food for comfort and 18 percent practice yoga. Only7 percent of residents decrease the time they spend using technology gadgetsto reduce stress.


Illinois residents report that getting enough exercise (35 percent) andsleep (35 percent) are the biggest wellness challenges. Only 13 percent ofIllinoisans judge their current state of wellness by the amount of sleep theyget.

The Election, Economy and Wellness

Thirty-nine percent of Illinoisans and 33 percent of Americans claim thatthe candidates' positions on personal wellness will influence how they votethis election. Additionally, 42 percent of Illinoisans report that the economyis having a negative impact on their wellness choices. For the nation, currenteconomic conditions also are negatively affecting the wellness of 51 percentof non-working parents, versus 43 percent of working parents. And, when itcomes to the battle of the sexes, the health of women is affected more by theeconomy (44 percent) than men (40 percent).

About the Amway Global Wellness Index

The Amway Global Wellness Index is a national survey of 15,035 Americanadults ages 18 and older to uncover American views toward the concept ofwellness and individual, family and community wellness. Commissioned by AmwayGlobal, the study has an estimated margin of error of +/-0.8 percentage

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