Women’s Health Group Tackles Obesity


The Wisconsin Women’s Health Foundation is taking on obesity. The group assembled an expert panel meeting Wednesday. One topic will be how women’s weight can influence their child’s weight even into adulthood.

The propensity to put on pounds is certainly not limited to one gender. However, women have to put on weight during certain times in their lives, like when they are expecting a child.

Tara Larowe is an assistant scientist in the Department of Family Medicine at UW Madison. She says this is just one reason women may become overweight. “That’s a critical time for gaining weight. And, unfortunately, many women don’t lose the pregnancy weight, and often aren’t given enough guidance how much weight they should be gaining so often gain too much weight.”

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It is not only a concern for mom. Larowe says children born to obese mothers are more likely to become obese themselves, and carry those extra pounds into adulthood. The discussion panel put together by the Wisconsin Women’s Health Foundation will also take a broader look at obesity, like how it drags down the economy. “The annual cost of obesity-related illness in this nation is nearing almost $200 billion and that’s huge. And, so, this also means it’s impacting employers because of absenteeism related to obesity-related issues. So this is huge on employers to keep their employees healthy.”

In Wisconsin, 63 percent of adults are obese or overweight.

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