At least 35 percent of adults in nine U.S. states were obese in 2018 (Alabama, Arkansas, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, North Dakota, and West Virginia), according to the CDC, based on self-reported height and weight data from all 50 states gathered through telephone surveys of more than 400,000 people. The lowest obesity rate was in Colorado (23 percent).
National data show that non-Hispanic black adults are most likely to be obese, followed by Hispanic adults, non-Hispanic white adults, and non-Hispanic Asian adults. Obesity increases the risk of numerous chronic health problems, including heart disease, hypertension, diabetes, osteoarthritis, and certain cancers.
The new data—which did not include obesity rates for children—suggest that the prevalence of obesity in many states will fail to meet the government’s Healthy People 2020 goal of 30.5 percent for adults.
This article first appeared in the UC Berkeley Wellness Letter.