According to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), more than one third of U.S. Adults are obese. Aiken, South Carolina resident Kathleen O'Brien was one of them until she figured out a way to slice through her weight issues.
Kathleen O'Brien explains, "I actually had a scale that would weigh me and when I kept sliding the thing over and it was over 500 and then it was over 550 and then it was over 600, then I started getting really scared."
That kicked off her weight loss journey which started at 630 pounds. At that weight, some of the easiest things to do provided the greatest challenge. "I use to carry a folding chair in my car so that wherever I was I knew that I would have a place to sit that I wouldn't have to worry about breaking," O'Brien says.
Although the road hasn't been easy, O'Brien says it's been paved with lots of fruits and vegetables, which have provided fuel for road to weight loss success. She adds, "I started cutting back and I started not eating junk food and not going to all those places and drinking less soda and trying to eat better."
O'Brien says a national organization with local chapters has also helped drive her toward her goals. It's called "Take Off Pounds Sensibly" or TOPS. The group gives top honors to people who loose weight through hard work and sacrifice. Kathleen O'Brien is the South Carolina reigning queen. "It's more word of mouth and people. But, it really does live up to its name and take off pounds sensibly," she says.
For Kathleen O'Brien, the support of a group plus proper diet and exercise have possibly added years to her life. "It's a constant battle. It is. You have to be vigilant about it," O'Brien reflects.
Last year, Reuters reported that obesity added $190 billion to the annual national healthcare price tag.
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