Obesity Statistics, Facts: America Obesity Struggle
Obesity is defined as an individual having a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or greater. The population of the United States is plagued by obesity with over one-third of adults being considered obese. This 34.9% of adults doesn’t include the 17% of youth that is obese within the country, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Although these numbers have not increased dramatically since 2010, they have also not decreased. The country failed to meet a goal of reducing obesity to 15%. There is little surprise that weight loss surgery is on the rise in the United States.
Take-Home Notes on Obesity in the United States
- 74.1% of people are overweight
- 37.7% of those are obese
- 38.3% obesity in women
- 34.3% in men
- Slightly higher with age, race, and socioeconomic factors.
More than one in four severely obese men and one in five severely obese women lives in the United States. By 2025, the study estimates, 43% of women and 45% of men in the United States will be obese.
In 1975, 2.6% of the world’s population was obese; in 2014, that number jumped to 8.9%.
Cost of Obesity
In 2008, the estimated cost was approximately $147 Billion in the United States for an obese 18-year-old that remained obese throughout adulthood.
Recent estimates show 49 million Americans make food decisions based on cost.
- Among non-Hispanic black and Mexican-American men, those with higher incomes are more likely to have obesity than those with low income.
- Higher income women are less likely to have obesity than low-income women.
- There is no significant relationship between obesity and education among men. Among women, however, there is a trend—those with college degrees are less likely to have obesity compared with less educated women.
Exercise in America
78% of American’s are not meeting basic activity level recommendations. Obesity in America is becoming a serious concern for many health professionals. The epidemic has increased in recent decades as many health professionals try to find a solution.
Culture of Weight Loss Products
Weight loss pills, diets, ab-crunchers, workout videos, miracle teas, and countless others fill the radio, television, and Internet channels, all promising their buyers that they will lose weight. But as most of us know, they won’t work as well as something as simple as exercise.
The Weight Loss Industry by Numbers
If you are on a diet right now, or trying to lose weight, there is a giant industry out there you should be familiar with.
- Americans spend over $60,000,000,000 to lose weight, every year!
- Considering the fact that 75 million Americans are actively trying to lose weight, that’s $800 per person per year!
- The bulk of the money is spent on foods advertised as “diet” (e.g., diet cola).
- 80 percent of dieters undertake the mission on their own, while 20 percent join a paid weight loss group or see a health professional.
- The typical dieter makes four attempts per year to try and lose weight, meaning at least three diets fail.
- If you think 60 billion dollars is a lot, it’s actually dwarfed by the $300 billion fast food industry and the $100 billion junk food industry.
How much money are you spending this year to lose weight?
The Cost of Eating Healthy
Higher income women are less likely to be obese than low-income women. In today’s society, eating healthy is more expensive than eating whatever’s available at McDonald’s or Taco Bell. Fast food Dollar Menus are often the only food available for lower income families and families on the run. Researchers reported that eating more potassium, the most expensive of the four nutrients, can add $380 to the average person’s yearly food costs.
Obesity and Risks of Being Obese
- 80% of type II diabetes is related to obesity
- 70% of cardiovascular disease is related to obesity
- 42% of breast and colon cancer is diagnosed among obese individuals
- 30% of gall bladder surgery is related to obesity
- 26% of obese people have high blood pressure
- Costs overwhelm the healthcare industry
The groups that have the highest incidences of obesity are non-Hispanics, Mexican-Americans, all Hispanics and non-Hispanic whites (respectively, 44.1%, 39.3%, 37.9%, 32.6%). Among women, however, there is a trend — those with college degrees are less likely to be obese compared with less educated women. Education and obesity are negatively correlated with women. For men, there was no significant relationship between obesity and education levels. Non-Hispanic blacks have the highest age-adjusted rates of obesity (48.1%) followed by Hispanics (42.5%), non-Hispanic whites (34.5%), and non-Hispanic Asians (11.7%). Obesity is higher among middle age adults age 40-59 years (40.2%) and older adults age 60 and over (37.0%) than among younger adults age 20–39 (32.3%).