How Fat is Your State?: How Overweight and Diabetes Are Growing

Topics: Obesity and Weight Loss

The Centers for Disease Control surveyed nearly 200,000 Americans by phone and asked them for their numbers–their real weight, height and diagnoses. The Journal of the AMA published the results–and you know the rest of the story: 21% obese, 8% diabetic, 2% morbidly obese (100# over)—but these numbers are actually low, and underestimate the problem.

Why are these numbers too low to be accurate? The researchers only contacted people with phones–and many poor people don’t have one, and are more likely to be overweight than average. The researchers had to rely on self-reports—notoriously unreliable (what does your driver’s license say?)

Actual weighed studies show that about 65% of US adults are overweight and 30% are obese: this study showed that of those who were overweight “65.9% were men and 49.9% were women.” That’s impressive—and dangerous.

Why? Because overweight and diabetes are directly related, and totally preventable: show me someone who is obese, and I will show you a future diabetic: “Of US adults aged 60 years or older, 15.1% had diagnosed diabetes.”

I’m crazy about food–I love cooking and shopping and being in restaurants and kitchens–but I have to balance it with activity. And in 2001, 25.5% of US adults did not engage in any leisure-time physical activity. None.

Form a plan. Start one step at a time. If you can afford it, get a coach. See a dietitian or a doctor who cares enough about you and your problem to hold you accountable and help you stick with it. You don’t have to get diabetes, or heart failure or gout or arthritis or cancer. You do have to start. We have some of the best books in our Store, and of course, the RealAge Diet. Check it out.