Obesity in the US
The majority of US adults are either overweight or obese. To be precise, 2013 data from the CDC shows that 63.8% of US adults were either overweight (35.5%) or obese (28.3%). This puts the US in its own league compared to the rest of the world: the average obesity level of the OECD countries - 34 of the world's richest countries - is just a little over half the US level.
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Top 10 - Obesity
Top 10 - Overweight
A look at the latest data
Obesity levels vary quite a bit throughout the different US states however: the difference between the states with the lowest (Colorado: 21.3%) and the highest level (Mississippi and West Virginia: 35.1%) is almost 14 percent points. The spread among the states for overweight adults is considerably smaller: a 7.8 percent point difference between the lowest (District of Columbia: 30.9%) and highest locations (Puerto Rico: 38.7%)
Obese and overweight adults per US state
Overweight per US state
Trends in obesity
In the majority of states the overall number of overweight or obese people is increasing. Virginia, a state with less obese adults than the national average, showed the largest decrease: 2% between 2011 and 2013. In general, the states with higher percentages of obese adults are also the states with higher increase percentages:
Adult obesity: latest figure compared to 2-year change
Obese and overweight adolescents per US state
Obesity is on the rise among adolescents in most US states. Between 2009 and 2013, the number of obese youngsters grew with 2 percent points. The biggest increase was in Alabama (3.8 percent point); the biggest decrease was in Mississippi (-2.7 percent point).