Nashville Featured in “Weight of the Nation”

Nashvillians will get a sneak peek tonight at a new HBO documentary that highlights Mayor Karl Dean’s efforts to encourage healthy living.

The Weight of the Nation is the latest in a series of HBO films examining public health issues. In the the trailer for the documentary, one man cites statistics that say two-thirds of America is obese or overweight, while another calls obesity:

“…the biggest threat to the health, welfare and future of this country”

Last spring, with HBO cameras in tow, Mayor Dean started taking regular walks through the city’s parks with as many people as would show up, and he challenged everyone to try to log 100 miles, one way or another, in the span of a few months.

Producer John Hoffman says that kind of effort gets to the point of the film.

“We have to make the world we live in a healthier place, and that’s going to take commitment of individuals, it’s going to take commitment of communities, and that’s why the story of Nashville is so compelling to us, because Karl Dean really understands that.”

While in Nashville, the filmmakers also interviewed with Vanderbilt physicians and local people who work in both active and sedentary jobs.

HBO will screen the portions of the program that relate to Nashville tonight at the Tennessee Performing Arts Center. The entire four-part documentary is set to air on May 14 and 15.

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