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U.S. obesity rates top 30 percent in nine states

Article-U.S. obesity rates top 30 percent in nine states

Atlanta — Nine states now report an adult obesity rate of 30 percent or more — triple the number of states that reported such a high prevalence in 2007, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Not a single state had that high a rate a decade ago, MedPage Today reports. According to CDC statistics, no state has met the national goal of lowering obesity prevalence to 15 percent. Only Colorado and Washington, D.C., reported rates under 20 percent.

The nine states with more than 30 percent prevalence are Mississippi, Kentucky, West Virginia, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Louisiana, Missouri and Alabama.

The CDC reports the highest obesity rates are found among non-Hispanic blacks (36.8 percent); Hispanics (30.7 percent); people who failed to finish high school (32.9 percent); patients age 50 to 59 (31.1 percent); and patients age 60 to 69 (30.9 percent).

Investigators also cautioned that the study relied on self-reported data, which probably underestimated the prevalence of obesity.

The CDC notes that recent estimates of the annual medical costs of obesity are as high as $147 billion. An obese person’s annual medical costs average $1,429 more than those of a non-obese person.

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