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The latest news on this change — carefully culled from the world wide web by our change agents. They do the surfing, so you don't have to!

Is Your Weight Harming the Planet?

If someone challenged you on your weight, you probably argued that it's not hurting anyone else so why should anyone care?  However, new research shows that an individual's weight may actually be contributing to global warming.
A team at the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine says an overweight person’s diet leads to the consumption of more fuel to transport them and the food they eat. This in turn adds to food shortages and higher energy prices. With at least 400 million adults around the globe currently classified as "obese" (with a BMI of more than 30) and an expected 2.3 billion people expected to be overweight by 2015, this could spell disaster.

The study also showed obese people require 1,680 daily calories to sustain normal energy and another 1,280 calories to maintain daily activities, 18% more than a person with a stable BMI. Because slender people eat less and are more apt to walk than depend on cars, a thinner population would lessen the demand for fuel for transportation and for agriculture, according to researchers.

Researchers say the next step is to determine how much a heavier population is actually playing a part in climate change, higher fuel prices and food shortages.

Experts urge people to live healthier, eat local foods and control their weight, but it might be hard to convince them that this research makes sense.

Do you think there's a direct connection between one's weight and the state of the planet, or is this a load of rubbish? [Reuters]

Posted: 5/21/08