About one-third of U.S. adults are obese, according to the latest data from the National Center for Health Statistics.
The prevalence of obesity among adults aged 20 and over was 32.2% in 2015-2016, up from 31.3% in 2013-2014. The sharpest increase was among middle-aged adults aged 40-59, whose obesity rate rose from 30.3% to 32.9%.
The obesity epidemic has been linked to a range of health problems, including heart disease, stroke, diabetes and certain types of cancer.
Obesity is defined as having a body mass index (BMI) of 30 or above. BMI is a measure of body fat based on height and weight.
The good news is that the obesity rate among children and adolescents has levelled off in recent years. But the rates remain alarmingly high, with about 17% of kids aged 2-19 considered obese.
There are a number of ways to prevent or treat obesity, including healthy eating and regular physical activity. If you’re struggling to lose weight, talk to your doctor or a registered dietitian for help.