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By Laura Smith:
Georgia faces economic pressure from chronic illness
Big people are big business in the United States, where about one in three adults and one in six children and adolescents are considered obese.
It’s known that obesity takes a toll on physical health, often leading to chronic conditions like diabetes, hypertension and joint problems. What many don’t recognize is the financial burden associated with obesity — costs that go far beyond the obese individual.
From the road, Wakefield Farm’s pastures look like most lining Highway 172 to Hartwell: brilliant green fields, studded with stands of trees and dotted with cows. But in fact this 1500-acre cattle farm bears scant resemblance to most cattle operations in Georgia. Wakefield’s owner and manager want to raise and sell top-quality beef, but they also strive to protect the land and water where their cattle breed, graze and grow to market weight.
Organic, locally-grown foods are available nearly everywhere these days. Farmer’s markets park trucks and pitch tents on small town squares, and in the hustle and bustle of cities.