Washington, DC (PRWEB) December 27, 2012
According to a recently published Robert Wood Johnson Foundation report, by 2030, at least 44% of Americans in EVERY state will be obese. Additionally, obesity rates will top 60% in 13 states. Simply stated, more than four out of ten Americans nationwide and more than six out of ten in 13 states will be obese, not just overweight. Put another way, over 132 million Americans will be obese if we do not do something about it. The report also estimates that cases of diabetes, coronary heart disease, hypertension, and arthritis could increase ten times between 2010 and 2020 and then double again by 2030. The associated annual increase in the cost of health care will be between $ 48 billion and $ 66 billion per year between now and 2030 while the annual loss in productivity for the same period will cost us between $ 390 billion and $ 580 billion per year. Obesity is going to cost us trillions of dollars!
This crisis is unfolding in front of our eyes. Economic recovery from the recent recession may be short lived. The degrading health and ever expanding waistline of America threatens to lead us into both economic and national security crises. Health care costs will continue to explode, worker productivity will decrease, and the number of young people fit for military service will continue to dramatically shrink. Our status as the worlds leading power will be threatened, not necessarily through the actions of China, but by our own behaviors.
Entrepreneurial initiative, however, can reverse this negative trend. We are constantly reminded that entrepreneurial initiative is the key to economic growth and can help us surmount seemingly overwhelming challenges. In this crisis, entrepreneurs will not only spark growth, they will also inspire behavioral change in Americans everywhere; and this change has already started. The start-up ground game has begun and is attacking the problem head-on.
Hundreds of companies have created innovative ways to use technology to help people get or stay in shape. They provide everything from education and information to tracking, coaching, and health monitoring. Some have even figured out how to harness individual motivation and generate behavior change and are successfully getting and keeping people off the living room couch. Of these early and mid-stage companies, seven of the leading, most respected, and well-known have banded together to form Founders In Technology Combating Obesity, or more simply, FITco.
FITco is a coalition of innovative companies dedicated to developing technologies to help reduce obesity in America. These companies are using their products and apps, many of which are free, to change lives; and changing lives they are. Average Americans are losing weight while seeing their dress and pants sizes shrink. Those with high blood pressure are getting off of their blood pressure medication while others, who are diabetics, are seeing improvements in their physiology and blood work. These amazing changes, however, are just the beginning. FITcos member companies are dedicated to spreading the word that technology is here to help. Contrary to popular perception, technology does not have to make you sedentary, overweight, or unhealthy. Technology, used effectively, can help people live the active, healthy lives they have always dreamed of, get in the shape they imagined, and even make a healthy lifestyle fun and engaging.
FITco is actively attacking the obesity epidemic and helping people meet their health goals every day. Each member company produces products that fill a specific health need. The inaugural list of FITco companies consists of the following:
RunKeeper is a Boston-based fitness technology company that packs the benefits of a personal trainer into the convenience of a smartphone. Using your phone’s built-in GPS, our mobile app enables you to track your workouts, receive guidance from running experts, and connect with friends in order to better reach your fitness goals. It was one of the first 200 apps to launch in the iTunes app store in 2008, and weve since attracted a passionate community of millions of RunKeeper users around the world.
Azumio: Azumio is a leader in biofeedback health apps on mobile devices with more than 20 million downloads to date on both iOS and Android platforms. Azumio is dedicated to the improvement of peoples wellness by influencing healthy behavior through the use of innovative mobile applications and allowing users access to aggregated personal health data to lead a health-oriented lifestyle.
Nexercise: Nexercise delivers motivation to people who want to lose weight and get in better shape. As seen on the television show “The Doctors” and in several leading publications, the free Nexercise iPhone and Android app motivates people to lose weight, get in better shape, and finally be consistent in their exercise behaviors. Through physical activity, users earn real rewards like gift cards from national retailers. They can also stay in touch with and compete with friends and track their progress.
Fooducate: Fooducate is like having a dietician on speed dial. Lose weight, eat real food, and get healthy. Fooducate grades your groceries, explains what’s really inside each product, and offers healthier alternatives. They have the largest database of UPCs – over 200,000 unique products and growing.