The latest data on obesity in the United States is in, and according to the Trust for America’s Health (TFAH) and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, no states have seen a decrease in obesity rates, but 6 states have seen increases.
The numbers come from the most recent information available, looking at the 2012-2013 time frame. While the rate of obesity remains steady for the majority of the country, overall the U.S. is in better condition than it has been in previous years. In 2005, for example, almost every state saw an increase in obesity numbers.
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“According to the most recent data, two states have adult obesity rates above 35 percent, 20 states have rates at or above 30 percent, 43 states have rates at or above 25 percent and every state is above 20 percent,” reads the report.
Mississippi and West Virginia have the highest rates of obesity at 35.1 percent, compared to Colorado with the lowest rate at 21.3 percent.
Experts indicate all 10 states with the highest rates of obesity are in the South or Midwest, with Northeastern and Western states comprising most of the states with the lowest rates of obesity.
The six states six states showing increases in adult obesity were Alaska, Delaware, Idaho, New Jersey, Tennessee and Wyoming.
“Obesity rates are unacceptably high, and the disparities in rates are profoundly troubling,” Jeffrey Levi, executive director of TFAH, said in a statement. “We need to intensify prevention efforts starting in early childhood, and do a better job of implementing effective policies and programs in all communities so every American has the greatest opportunity to have a healthy weight and live a healthy life.”
Obesity, while a global issue, is seen most often in industrialized and developing countries where food is readily available, but may not be of the highest quality. Almost a third of all adults in the U.S. are considered obese and even more considered overweight or obese.
CNN reports groups with the highest rate of obesity include non-Hispanic blacks, Hispanics and non-Hispanic whites.
Obesity among U.S. adults doubled between 1990 and 2010.
Approximately 17 percent of children and adolescents aged 2-19 years are obese.
It is estimated that annual medical care costs of obesity are as high as $147 billion.
Other facts gathered by the TFAH analysis, including those related to minorities, indicate:
- 40.7 percent of Latino boys are obese or overweight compared with 27.8 percent of non-Hispanic white boys.
- Kentucky high school students have the worst obesity rate in US at 18 percent. Utah the best at 6.4 percent.
- 18 states show declining obesity rates for young kids from low-income families.
- 7 of the 10 states with the highest obesity rates for ages 10-17 are in the South.
- 7 of the 10 states with the lowest obesity rates for ages 10-17 are in the West.
- 16.9 percent of children in the U.S. are obese and 31.8 percent are either obese or overweight.
- Childhood obesity rates are stabilizing in the U.S. after many years on the rise.
- 82 percent of African American women are overweight or obese compared to 63.2 percent of non-Hispanic white women.
- 77.2 percent of Latino women are overweight or obese compared to 63.2 percent of non-Hispanic white women.
- 47.8 percent of African American adults are obese compared to 32.6 percent of non-Hispanic white adults.
- 42.5 percent of Latino adults are obese compared to 32.6 percent of non-Hispanic white adults.
- Today 56.6 percent of African American women are obese compared with 29.7 percent of African American women in 1974.
- Black adult obesity rates have gone up by 8+ percentage points since 2002.
- Latino adult obesity rates have gone up by 10 percentage points since 2002.
- The obesity rate for Latino men has gone up from 15.7 percent in 1980 to 40.1 percent today.
- In the U.S., 20.2 percent of African American, 22.4 percent of Latino and 14.3 percent of non-Hispanic white children are obese.
- In the U.S., 37 percent of Hispanic girls are obese or overweight compared to 29.2 percent of non-Hispanic white girls.
- 10.1 percent of African American boys are severely obese compared with 3.3 percent of non-Hispanic white boys.