Iowa’s public health department says Iowans get a fair to poor grade when it comes to healthy lifestyles. Just over half of the health goals the agency set for Iowans seven years ago have been achieved. Today, Department of Public Health director Stephen Gleason issued a new set of goals, simple things like encouraging Iowans to lose weight. Gleason says some people are overweight due to genetics, while others are that way due to behavior. He says the state can help with the behavior side.Dr. Sheila Riggs, an insurance company V-P, was co-chair of the “Healthy Iowans 2010” project. She says healthy and happy Iowans provide a better workforce.Lee Harris, a businessman from suburban Des Moines, suffered two heart attacks in two months — and lost 50 pounds at the direction of his doctors. He says it was a “wake up call.” To address the problem of obesity, the “Healthy Iowans 2010” report calls for spending a million dollars to establish exercise clubs around the state — and calls for creation of walking and hiking trails along Iowa roadways.
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