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CDC releases results from a 20-year obesity study

Americans on average are 15 pounds heavier than two decades ago

SAN ANTONIO – The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released a study showing obesity is on the rise. A local obesity expert, Dr. Anthony Comuzzie, said fighting obesity is not really a vanity thing, it's about serious illness. 

Commuzie, a scientist in genetics at Texas Biomedical Research Institute, issued a statement warning about long-term health issues related to obesity, saying, “In general the U.S. population is continuing to gain weight at a fairly rapid rate, and such an increase does not bode well for the overall health of the nation. Such findings would suggest that there will likely be an associated increase in chronic diseases, in Type 2 diabetes and heart disease in the coming years. "

Tourists walking near the Alamo said they experienced what Commuzzie pointed out.

"One time I went up to 240-250. I lost that weight, had a heart attack, shut it down. That'll do it," said Craig Jordan, a man who was visiting San Antonio from New Orleans with his wife, Cynthia.

The couple, who have been married for 50 years, embrace what researchers suggest. They said diet and exercise are important.

"I go to the gym every day,” said Cynthia Jordan, laughing as she looked toward her husband Craig, who said his wife is indeed a gym rat.

"Every day, every day. I don't go with her either," Craig Jordan said.

Dave Willette, also a tourist, said eating more calories than you burn will pack on the pounds.

"It's mostly food. I think whatever you put in your mouth is going to cause you to gain weight," Willette said.

Another passerby on a scorching hot day near the Alamo, construction worker Vince Valdez, said he'd like to lose weight but must first give up his favorite foods.

"Burger, fries, and beer. Pizza. I love pizza,” Valdez said with a chuckle.