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Got extra pounds? Blame next door foreclosure
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Gain a couple of pounds since 2006?

Perhaps you’ve starting drinking more booze.

Or maybe your blood pressure has gone up in the last eight years.

Bad habits may not be to blame.

The culprit may be foreclosed homes.

The Journal of the American Heart Association printed the results of a Massachusetts study of 1,780 individuals between 1987 and 2008 and found anyone living within 328 feet of a foreclosure was prone to:

ugain an average of 1.3 pounds a year.

uexperience a blood pressure increase of 1.71 millimeters of mercury.

uincrease their alcoholic beverage consumption by 0.55 drinks a week.

The research done by the Harvard Center for Population and Development Studies found that near the end of the study period in 2006 to 2008 that some 133 or 7.6 percent of the 1,780 people studied lived within 328 feet of a foreclosed home. Those people showed spikes in blood pressure, weight, and alcohol consumption the researchers believe is related to being in close proximity to the foreclosures.

Since more than 30 percent of Manteca’s single family homes at one point during the past eight years were in foreclosure practically everybody in the city can blame foreclosures for putting on a few more pounds, being more stressed, and hitting the bottle harder.

It’s the same genre of the Twinkie defense save for the fact researchers believe they had adequate controls in their study to validate foreclosures as a connection to bad heath and habit.

Get $3 match for every $1 for your down payment

A free seminar Wednesday, June 11, from 6:30 to 8 p.m. at the Manteca Library, 320 W. Center St., will provide information about the new Qualified Mortgages, steps to take before buying a home, how to improve your credit and how to qualify for a mortgage loan in today’s lending environment, and what down payment assistance programs are available and how to receive them. It will include information on how qualified buyers can receive a $3 dollar match for each $1 you save up to $15,000.

NeighborWorks HomeOwnership Center is hosting the seminars and presenters from local government, Union Bank and Bank of America and local Realtors will be on hand to provide valuable information about today’s lending options and real estate properties available on the market and what down payment programs are available to help with your closing costs and down payment.

RSVP to NeighborWorks Stockton at (209) 473-4363 extension 3100 or .