The State of Nutrition and
Physical Activity in Our Schools
News and Information about Obesity
Obesity Among High School Students
The World Health Organization says obesity is a global epidemic that affects not only adults, but also children and adolescents worldwide. In the United States, obesity and overweight prevalence is estimated to be at least 15 percent for all children and adolescents, and higher than 30 percent in some population subgroups. Obesity is now the most serious dietary problem affecting the health of American children.
Adult Obesity in the United States
According to data released September 2015, rates of obesity now exceed 35 percent in three states (Arkansas, West Virginia and Mississippi), 22 states have rates above 30 percent, 45 states are above 25 percent, and every state is above 20 percent. Arkansas has the highest adult obesity rate at 35.9 percent, while Colorado has the lowest at 21.3 percent.
Obesity Rates and Trends
More than a third of adults (34.9 percent) were obese as of 2011 to 2012. More than two-thirds of adults were overweight or obese (68.6 percent). Approximately 17 percent of children and teenagers (ages 2 to 19) were obese from 2011 to 2012, and 31.8 percent were either overweight or obese.