Did you know November is National Diabetes Awareness Month and obesity costs the health care system $147 billion each year?
According to a new report some states have more obese and overweight residents than others; here are 2021’s Most Overweight & Obese States in America
To determine which states contribute the most to America’s overweight and obesity problem, the report compared the 50 states and the District of Columbia across 31 key metrics. They range from the share of the overweight and obese population to sugary-beverage consumption among adolescents to obesity-related health care costs.
Below are the key findings:
|20 Most Overweight & Obese States|
|1. West Virginia||11. Texas|
|2. Mississippi||12. Ohio|
|3. Arkansas||13. Georgia|
|4. Kentucky||14. Missouri|
|5. Alabama||15. Kansas|
|6. Tennessee||16. Iowa|
|7. Delaware||17. North Carolina|
|8. Louisiana||18. Michigan|
|9. South Carolina||19. Indiana|
|10. Oklahoma||20. Maryland|
Colorado and Massachusetts have the lowest percentage of obese adults, 24.00 percent, which is 1.7 times lower than in Mississippi, the state with the highest at 39.70 percent.
Utah has the lowest percentage of physically inactive adults, 16.10 percent, which is 1.8 times lower than in Kentucky, the state with the highest at 29.40 percent.
Colorado has the lowest percentage of diabetic adults, 7.50 percent, which is 2.1 times lower than in West Virginia, the state with the highest at 15.70 percent.
Colorado has the lowest percentage of adults with high blood pressure, 24.50 percent, which is 1.7 times lower than in Mississippi, the state with the highest, at 40.60 percent.
Some Help on Getting Healthier
What are some tips for eating healthy without breaking the bank?
“It is a misperception that ‘eating healthy is very expensive (somewhat). If you follow the latest marketing jargon like ‘organic’ etc. or shop at the favorite overpriced healthy grocer it is but go to your regular grocery store, look for sales, buy frozen vegetables (cheaper and healthy), etc. Also, think of all the places you go to spend money on unhealthy items (high-end coffee shops, restaurants, delivery services … consider how much it would cost you to eat at home instead (and it is almost always healthier and easier to control). Finally, do not buy more than you need (spoilage), reduce portions (especially for weight management but health also (eating less of an unhealthy food item reduces all its unhealthy aspects),” according to Martin Binks, Ph.D., director, Nutrition & Metabolic Health Initiative (NMHI); professor at Texas Tech University.
“Try to eat unprocessed whole foods as much as you can. Try to have several servings per day of milk, cheese, beans, fruits, and vegetables. Most of these items are not too expensive and they are packed with vitamins, minerals, and fiber to keep you healthy,” said Krista Varady, Ph.D., a professor at the University of Illinois, Chicago.
What is the impact of obesity on the economy and worker productivity?
“Obesity and its comorbid conditions (e.g., type-2 diabetes, hypertension, sleep apnea) have a significant impact on the economy and worker productivity. Comorbid conditions are expensive to treat, so the number one economic issue is higher medical costs. Workers lose wages due to sick days, and productivity decreases when workers do not feel well,” according to Marjorie Freedman, Ph.D., a professor at San Jose State University.
“According to the CDC, obesity and its associated health problems have a significant economic impact on the U.S. health care system. This includes direct medical costs such as preventive, diagnostic, and treatment services. Indirect costs are related to higher rates of sickness and death and also include lost productivity. This includes employees being absent from work for obesity-related health reasons, decreased productivity while at work, and premature death and disability. According to the National League of Cities, the annual costs of obesity are close to $190 Billion or 21% of all medical spending annually in the U.S,” said Alexandra (Alex) Adams, M.D., Ph.D., director, and principal investigator, Center for American Indian and Rural Health Equity (CAIRHE), at Montana State University.
What are the biggest mistakes people make when trying to lose weight?
“The biggest mistake is starting and stopping different diets. When people stop a diet after a few months, they end up gaining all the weight back because they go back to their normal eating habits. Find a diet that is pretty close to the way you currently eat. Then try to stick to that regimen long-term. For example, if you do not eat a lot of carbs, try the keto diet. Or if you can go for a while without snacking, try intermittent fasting. No matter what diet you try, the key is sticking to that new eating pattern long-term to ensure weight management success!” Varady said.