Wednesday, March 3, 2004
Weigh In set for today
Americans from coast to coast will hit the scales today to take part in the second annual American Cancer Society Great American Weigh In.
The Great American Weigh In was established in 2003 by the American Cancer Society and founding sponsor Weight Watchers International, Inc. to promote cancer prevention by encouraging people to eat well, be active, and maintain a healthy weight. The first step - knowing your body mass index. A BMI over 25 is a health risk for many serious diseases and should prompt a personal plan of action.
According to the American Cancer Society, about 35 percent of cancer deaths in the U.S. annually are attributable to poor nutrition and excess body weight, and could have been prevented through a combination of healthier eating habits, regular physical activity, and weight control.
Throughout today, free BMI screening and information on cancer prevention will be available to the public at participating Weight Watchers locations nationwide. In addition, this year the American Cancer Society Great American Weigh In will be expanded into the workplace to include many of the U.S. companies who offer Weight Watchers At Work meetings on site. During the first week of March, these participating companies will offer their employees weigh ins and provide information on how to reduce their cancer risk through healthy eating and exercise.
Most working Americans spend the majority of their day at the office, so it makes sense to focus peoples attention on what they can do to improve their health both during the workday and after it, said Ralph B. Vance, MD, FACP, the American Cancer Societys national volunteer president. We also want companies to become more aware of how they can help their employees by providing healthy foods in company cafeterias and vending machines and by offering their workers on-site health promotion programs and opportunities to participate in community-based physical activity events.
Healthy weight is the result of a healthy lifestyle that encompasses home, work, and leisure, said Karen Miller-Kovach, MS, RD, chief scientific officer, Weight Watchers International, Inc. Healthy weight not only improves a persons quality of life, it is vital to preserving health and preventing illness.
In addition to the American Cancer Society Great American Weigh In, the Society and Weight Watchers have a continuing commitment to promoting healthy weight as part of a healthy lifestyle. Throughout the year, Weight Watchers disseminates the Societys cancer prevention messages to its staff and members nationally.
The American Cancer Society is dedicated to eliminating cancer as a major health problem by saving lives, diminishing suffering, and preventing cancer through research, education, advocacy and service. Founded in 1913 and with national headquarters in Atlanta, the Society has 14 regional Divisions and local offices in 3,300 communities, involving millions of volunteers across the United States. For more information anytime, call toll free 1-800-ACS-2345 or visit www.cancer.org.