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When the band Train released "Drive By" in 2012, it became their third Top 10 hit in the U.S. There was a lot of appeal to the promise lead singer Patrick Monahan was making: "This is not a drive by, Just a shy guy Oh I swear to you, I'll be there for you. This is not a drive by."

No one wants to experience a broken heart from a drive-by romantic encounter! But far too many of you find that you're breaking your own heart because of your drive-by eating habits. It's been an expanding problem — for waistlines and body mass indices/BMIs — since the first drive-in opened in Baldwin Park, California, in 1948. Today, nearly 40% of U.S. adults are obese, and many experts say our car culture is one major cause.

A new demographics-based study published in PLOS One looked at 710 elementary school employees in New Orleans, and found that the more fast-food restaurants that were along a person's daily drive to and from work or near their home, the higher the employee's BMI. It seems, too often, you are what you drive by. And, unfortunately, for the almost 70% of Americans who are overweight or obese, that means you're at an increased risk for heart disease, some cancers, diabetes and depression.

So, try this trick: Put a cooler in the car stocked with healthy snacks for your commute, such as fresh, presliced fruit, cut-up veggies, walnuts and almonds, and plenty of water, black iced coffee or tea.


(c)2019 Michael Roizen, M.D.

and Mehmet Oz, M.D.

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