42 percent of Americans will be obese by 2030, study predicts

If trends continue, 42 percent of American adults will be obese by 2030 and about one quarter of whom will be grossly obese, a new study warns. The results are only slightly less troubling than those published four years ago, which forecast that 51 percent of the population would be obese by 2030.

Right now, 34 percent of American adults are obese and some evidence indicates obesity rates have reached a plateau. “Regardless which is correct, we still have a very serious problem,” said William H. Dietz, head of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention‘s obesity program. The results were discussed Monday at the “Weight of the Nation” conference in Washington, D.C.

The study, published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, used obesity prevalence data from 1990 to 2008 to analyze trends. Information came from the widely regarded Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, but because people tend to underestimate their weight when asked on the phone, a mathematical equation was used to compensate for the shortfalls, David Brown reports for The Washington Post. (Read more)

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