Suffolk County Legislator William Spencer on Wednesday announced an initiative called “The Healthy Huntington,” which aims to help residents of Huntington, Long Island decrease their chances of being seriously impacted by COVID-19 by losing weight.
Spencer, who is also a physician, said many of his patients have been dealing with high levels of anxiety during the pandemic — leading to “a lot of emotional eating.” Adding, “I myself have put on a few pounds,” he said at a news conference. “I like to refer to it as the COVID 10.”
COVID-19 has a “much greater impact” on people with diabetes, high blood pressure and asthma, all of which are “associated with obesity,” Spencer noted.
An analysis published by the Journal of the American Medical Association last month found that nearly 42 percent of 5,700 COVID-19 patients admitted to 12 Northwell Health hospitals in the New York City area were obese.
The politician has teamed up with local Fitness and Yoga centres, to offer a virtual “healthy lifestyle program” to Huntington residents, complete with free virtual exercise and yoga classes, nutritional advice and Facebook Live events discussing obesity and COVID-19.