We got to drive the last section of the Run Across KY this week, since we are on spring break. Using the road into Hickman, KY that I chose, we will be running on gravel and dirt at times. We also saw many “factory” farms along the route. We only have 2 spots we are worried about traffic and safety on that section, but we think we have a plan that will help maximize safety for me and the drivers on the road. I hope to publish the route this week.
In our conversations about the run to various people, I have noticed almost everyone says they have a close relative (sister, brother, mother, father, etc.) that has diabetes or has died from complications of it. Last night we met the founder of MedWater, and talked about the similarities of trying to change perceptions and habits in a community. Chana is currently working with communities in Ecuador to improve water sources and teach communities how to keep the water clean for the long term.
In the right column is a “heat map” of diabetic diagnosis that the CDC put out in 2010. The red swath through the southeastern corner got named the “diabetic belt.” The map is a survey of counties in the U.S. It used to be interactive, but the site was no longer active. I got the picture here: http://www.scientificamerican.com/article/diabetes-belt/
Below that is a heat map of male smokers in the U.S. This map is broken down by state, not counties, but It shows a correlation with red states in the diabetic heat map. The CDC has a series of statistics with smoking at this page: http://www.cdc.gov/tobacco/campaign/tips/resources/data/cigarette-smoking-in-united-states.html
The most telling part of it for me is by education level and income level:
Education Level Cigarette Smoking Rate
Less than high school 25.5%
High school graduate 23.8%
Some college 22.3%
Associate degree 19.3%
Undergraduate degree 9.3%
Postgraduate degree 5.0%
Income Status Cigarette Smoking Rate
Below poverty level 29.0%
At or above poverty level 17.9%
Income status heat map is from the Guardian using census data: http://www.theguardian.com/news/datablog/interactive/2011/sep/15/us-poverty-mapped Once again the map follows a similar path of the diabetic belt.
Below the poverty heat map is a series of maps put out by the CDC on obesity rates and how they have changed over time. If you look at the 2010 section, you can see how the diabetic belt is represented.
I will write more about my thoughts on these correlations at a later post. I prefer to show you some things I’ve read and seen and let you develop your own opinion. I am visual, and I think the maps demonstrate much more than charts or paragraphs will. I believe the only way to affect true change is for the change to derive from oneself, so look at the pictures and think about it.