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Obesity Rate in America: Obesity Statistics

Obesity Rate in America

Obesity Rate in America

Obesity Rate in America Facts

Obesity is a medical condition where excess body fat gets accumulated leading to adverse effects on health. Body Mass Index (BMI) is used to determine whether a person is obese or not. People having BMI greater than30 kg/m2 are diagnosed as obese. Eating too much junk food and living a sedentary lifestyle are prime reasons of obesity. And obesity brings in diseases like breathing difficulties, diabetes, high blood pressure, heart diseases and osteoarthritis.

66 million Americans are clinically obese. That means that they have more than 30% fat by body weight, when a ‘normal’ body should have less than 25%. Obesity has reached epidemic proportions over the past twenty years.

Obesity used to be thought of as a problem of a few states in Appalachia and the Southeast. It is now prevalent across the United States. In 1990, no state had an obesity prevalence rate greater than 20%, and only 4 states had an obesity rate between 15 and 19%. By 2000, 46 states had obesity rates of greater than 20%, and 17 states had obesity prevalence of over 25%.

Obesity rate in america has relatively increased over the decade and also the rates are climbing around the developed industrial world. It is estimated that there are over 300 million obese people in the world. Rates in China, Western Europe and even Japan are increasing.

Obesity Rate in America Statistics

Morbid obesity, defined as a BMI (body mass index) of greater than 39%, afflicts 3% of all Americans, or about 9 million people. obesity rate in america has increased by 24% from 2000 to 2006, the number of morbidly obese people has grown by over 50% during the same period.

Even children are not immune. Whereas childhood obesity was virtually unknown before 1990 in the US, the incidence of obesity has climbed to 13% amongst teens and pre-teens in 2006. Type-II diabetes, previously only an affliction of obese adults, has started to become a concern with children as well.

The statistics are incontrovertible. The key questions are: how does obesity affect the health of those who have it, what is causing dramatic rise of obesity rate in america, and how can we reverse its effects?

Obesity leads to a series of problems. The main concerns with the obese are heart and circulatory diseases (including strokes and peripheral vascular problems) and diabetes. These two problems are interrelated, as diabetics have a much higher chance of contracting circulatory diseases.

Even the incidence of some cancers, such as estrogen-dependent breast cancer, can be raised by obesity. Those diseases related to diabetes and overweight are also increased; these include blindness, neuropathy, congestive heart failure and valve calcification.

Why obesity rate in america Raised

What are the primary reasons for this rise of obesity rate in america? While there was always an underlying level prior to 1990 due to problems with the thyroid, heredity or other hormone imbalances, the growth in obesity rate in america since then can only be attributed to the consumption of higher-calorie foods and lack of exercise.

High calorie consumption comes through a number of sources, but especially.

“super-sizing.” Compare the size of a McDonald’s hamburger from the 1980’s and one served today, it’s three times bigger, on average, by weight.

The presence of sugar and fat in the foods we eat.

We eat out much more often than we did in the past. Restaurants tend to pour on the sugar and fats, and their portions are enormous.

Lower exercise comes from the proliferation of armchair activities we’ve seen since 1990. At that time, there were four or five main TV channels; there are now over 150 on most televisions. Americans are watching much more television today than they did 20 years ago. In addition, the attractions of the Internet have led to a sedentary existence, particularly for pre-teens and teenagers. The habits that these people form in their youth remain with them for the rest of their lives, this has played a recognizable role in growth of obesity rate in america.

How To Fight Obesity

What can be done against obesity and morbid obesity? The usual ‘saws’ of “more exercise, less caloric intake” are always valid, but heeded less and less. Despite the proliferation of gyms, commercial diet plans and books on dieting, most diets fails.

For those who are morbidly obese, Bariatric Surgery is the best alternative. Although dangerous, four percent die during or after surgery, and ineffective in over 20% of the cases, bariatric surgery often represents the best opportunity for the morbidly obese person to escape the serious problems brought on by their overweight condition.

Here are few reasons why we should rise to the occasion and fight obesity now.


Obesity has been identified as one of the major and preventable causes of death around the world. Being among the highest percentage of obese populations, we are pushing ourselves toward self destruction. A BMI over 32 has been found to double the mortality rate than that less than 30. Severe obesity reduces life expectancy by about 10 years.

Eating too much junk food should be avoided in the first place. Americans eat junk foods because they are readily available, and because television commercials provoke eating such food. Fat cheese burgers, bacon and ham are easily available when you are hungry, for instance. So are those inviting soft drinks.

These are much cheaper and tastier than fresh fruits and homemade food. If easy availability and low price are prime attractions, huge portions of such food fuels obesity. For obese smokers, the picture is worse. They are doubly harming their body which can lead a life full of problems and diseases!


Various physical and mental conditions termed as metabolic syndrome, gets aggravated by obesity. These include conditions like high blood pressure, high levels of triglycerides and blood cholesterol. The complications may arise out of obesity or inter-related issues like sedentary lifestyle and poor diet. Increased body weight is responsible for osteoarthritis, sleeping disorder and mental problems like social stigma. An increased number of fat cells leads to conditions like fatty liver, cardiovascular diseases, cancer and diabetes.


According to findings of a recent study there is drastic growth in obesity rate in america, about three-fourths of the American population will be obese by 2020. The present scenario is not much better as America has the highest percentage of obese population in the world. The situation has reached at an alarming level with more children getting obese. Once young people start getting obese, the fight becomes more difficult.

A recent survey has revealed that two out of three Americans are overweight or obese. This is a stunning 50% increase from the stats we had a decade ago. According to this study, more Americans are going to die this year from obesity-related causes than last few years. Obesity is poised to take over smoking as leading cause of preventable death in America.

The battle against obesity should start at school level by spreading awareness among young ones. The importance of a balanced diet, nutritional value of foods, and the significance of regular exercise should be explained to future generations, too. People need to follow a schedule of exercise and remain active, plus control food habits to help prevent this deadly epidemic.

Obesity is a scourge on our modern populace. We should do what we can to address the underlying causes.

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