Study finds Kootenai County residents 49 pounds overweight

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Results of a study involving the health of Kootenai County residents indicate we have let ourselves go.

A private study conducted by DietSpotlight, a private health and nutrition company from Coral Gables, Fla., measured weight and body mass index in adults nationwide, making sure to categorize participants by location, as well. Local residents, on average, were 49.4 pounds heavier than what the World Health Organization considers a target weight in relation to height.

Yep: We’re fat.

“The two basic ingredients are to eat real food and develop a more active lifestyle,” said Eric Duncan of Peak Fitness in Coeur d’Alene. “A good rule of thumb is, if your grandparents can understand what you’re eating, it’s probably healthy.”

Kootenai County men averaged 227 pounds with a Body Mass Index of 31.4, according to the study. Kootenai County women averaged 172 pounds, scoring a BMI of 29.0.

“You want to include fruits and vegetables in your diet every day,” Duncan said. “Limit your refined sugars and your fast food. It’s called junk food for a reason. One of the phrases we preach around here is, ‘You can’t out-train a bad diet.’”

Natasha Hoyt, manager of Anytime Fitness in Coeur d’Alene, agreed, adding that exercise is a critical part of losing weight.

“Typically, you want to work out at least 150 minutes per week,” Hoyt said. “And that’s just to maintain general health. For losing weight, we recommend 300 minutes per week of moderate activity or 250 minutes of high-intensity activity.”

Both fitness folks recommended checking with a physician before beginning a workout regimen. Duncan added that keeping the weight off is just as important as losing it.

“Consistency is the key,” he said. “You’ve got to create a schedule and stick to it. Hopefully, that schedule will become a habit. There are a lot of trendy diets out there, but keeping a consistent diet and exercise routines are really important.”

The results weren’t all bad for Kootenai County residents. The survey determined local respondents are on average 9 pounds lighter than the rest of Idaho. We are also 9 pounds lighter than the national average.

“It’s important to remember to keep things balanced,” Duncan said. “Have a balanced diet and balanced routine. Developing healthy habits will keep you fit and feeling strong.”

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