Make us your home page

Today’s top headlines delivered to you daily.

(View our Privacy Policy)

Health line

Briefs: Obesity is top reason a third of young people are unfit for military

Obese? Uncle Sam doesn't want you

One-third of Americans ages 17 to 24 have health problems that make them unfit for military service, a new report from the Pentagon says. The biggest single health issue: obesity. "Kids are just not able to do pushups," Curt Gilroy, the Pentagon's director of accessions, told Army Times. "And they can't do pullups. And they can't run." This lack of fitness is a national security threat, declares a report called "Mission: Readiness.'' The report says 32 percent of American young people are overweight; in Florida, it's 33 percent. Add issues such as illegal drug use, dropping out of school and too many underage dependents, and just a quarter of U.S. youth meet service standards, according to the report.

Daily cup of cocoa helps your arteries

A bedtime cup of cocoa might do more than help you sleep. A new study shows the comforting beverage may reduce inflammation, potentially slowing or preventing development of atherosclerosis. Scientists in Barcelona, Spain, recruited 47 volunteers ages 55 and older who were at risk for heart disease. Half were given 20-gram sachets of soluble cocoa powder to drink with skim milk twice a day, while the rest drank plain skim milk. After one month, the groups were switched. Blood tests found that after participants drank chocolate milk twice a day for four weeks, they had significantly lower levels of several inflammatory biomarkers, though the effect was not as pronounced as that seen with red wine. Participants also had significantly higher levels of good HDL cholesterol after completing the chocolate milk regimen, according to the study, which appears in the November issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Get screened, free AARP membership

Walgreens and the AARP are sending big red buses around Pinellas County this month offering adults 18 and over six free health screenings: bone density, cholesterol, glucose, blood pressure, waist circumference and body mass analysis. No appointment is necessary, and those screened get a free one-year AARP membership for themselves or someone over 50. The first local stop is Wednesday at the Senior Friendly Extravaganza at Largo Cultural Center; another major stop is Nov. 27 and 28 at the Leap into Fitness event at Vinoy Park in St. Petersburg. For more stops at Walgreens stores in St. Petersburg, go to, or call your local Walgreens.

Times staff, wires

Briefs: Obesity is top reason a third of young people are unfit for military 11/11/09 [Last modified: Wednesday, November 11, 2009 6:04pm]
Photo reprints | Article reprints

© 2017 Tampa Bay Times


Join the discussion: Click to view comments, add yours

  1. Lightning takes defenseman Cal Foote with top pick in draft

    Lightning Strikes

    CHICAGO — Former Avalanche defenseman Adam Foote said his son Cal lived in the locker room.

    Cal Foote, second from left, is welcomed to the Lightning by GM Steve Yzerman, far left.
  2. It's Rays' turn to pound Orioles pitching (w/video)

    The Heater

    ST. PETERSBURG - Ah, the fantastic four.

    The Rays smashed the reeling Orioles 15-5 on Friday, scoring a season-high in runs, to climb four games above .500 for the first time since July 1, 2015.

    Rays third baseman Evan Longoria scores on a triple by Logan Morrison during the first inning against the Orioles.
  3. Lightning picks defenseman Cal Foote


    Cal Foote is the son of former Avs defenseman Adam Foote.
  4. Kids today: They don't work summer jobs the way they used to


    WASHINGTON — It was at Oregon's Timberline Lodge, later known as a setting in the horror movie The Shining, where Patrick Doyle earned his first real paycheck.

    Teens Ben Testa, from left, Hannah Waring and Abby McDonough, and Wegmeyer Farms owner Tyler Wegmeyer walk the strawberry rows at the Hamilton, Va., farm in late May.
  5. Jeb Bush back in the hunt for the Marlins, now opposing Derek Jeter


    Associated Press:

    Former Florida Gov. Jeb Bush has switched sides in pursuit of the Miami Marlins, and he’s trying to beat out former teammate Derek Jeter.