Staying fit can be tough.
Eating right, exercising, getting enough sleep -- it's tough to pull off for anybody, and it's all too easy to think up excuses for yourself to get out of following through on those good habits
A new report shows that those cheat days might be having an effect on life expectancy in Macon.
"We try to stay healthy, eat the best we can, go to the doctor's regularly," said Karen Hollar, but that's not the case for everyone.
According to financial news and opinion site 24/7 Wall Street, Macon residents have the lowest life expectancy of all cities in Georgia with an average of 74.9 years.
That's almost three full years shorter than Georgia's statewide average.
North Central Health Department spokesman Michael Hokanson says cardiovascular disease as one of Macon's biggest risks.
"In 2016, over 35 percent of the deaths were attributed to some sort of cardiovascular disease, which is anything from heart attack, stroke, aortic aneurysm, things like that," said Hokanson.
The exact figure was even higher at 37.1 percent. That number is well above the statewide figure, but that doesn't mean there's nothing you can do to beat the trend.
"Probably eight years ago-ish, I weighed 250 pounds. I started working out and eating better, and it just sort of evolved," said Tammy Ezell. She's run two marathons and participated in fitness competitions since then.
Hokanson says when you start making those healthy choices, you'll start to see positive results.
"The sooner you start making those lifestyle changes, the sooner you're going to see those effects on your life expectancy."
If you want help making healthy changes in your life, Hokanson says you can contact your county health department. They can provide dietary assistance, health education and preventative care.
To locate your health department, you can visit the North Central Health District's website to look up your county's department.
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