County ‘scales back’ a ton

Published 11:59 pm Wednesday, March 25, 2009

Covington County participants in the “Scale Back Alabama” campaign lost a total of 2,228 pounds during the 10-week weight-loss competition, hospital officials said.

Valarie McCalman, marketing assistant at Andalusia Regional Hospital, said that the hospital had 43 four-person teams participate in the event, and those 172 individuals lost 1,118 pounds — for an average of 6.5 pounds each.

“There was great local support and we had a wonderful turnout,” McCalman said. “It is great to see people making that choice to improve their health. The team component of this program is a great aspect, because people have an incentive to not let your team members down.”

Patty Ferman, clinical dietician at Mizell Memorial Hospital in Opp, said the hospital had 42 teams complete the program, losing a total of 1,100 pounds.

“We had a total of 60 teams at the start, with 42 finishing, for a 70 percent completion rate,” Ferman said in an e-mail. “I had a few teams from the Kinston/ Samson are that did not finish, but that’s understandable. We are ready for next year and will continue to encourage weight loss through the continuing nutritional education offered through the Wellness Center.”

In addition to feeling good about their weight loss, some participants in this year’s campaign are also eligible for cash prices. Every member who lost at least 10 pounds will be entered into a drawing for one of 50 achievement prizes of $100 per person.

In addition, those teams will also be entered into a drawing for one of three larger grand prizes. The first team drawn will win $250 each, the second team drawn will win $500 each and the third team drawn will win $1,000 per team member. These statewide drawings will be held Wed., April 1.

According to health statistics, Alabama is ranked third highest in the nation for rates of adult obesity, and also ranks high in rates of hypertension, diabetes and physical inactivity.