Ever cringe when you step on the scale?
Now, think of the entire country stepping on that scale. Imagine the Weight of the Nation.
CDC’s Obesity efforts focus on policy and environmental strategies to make healthy eating and active living accessible and affordable for everyone.
Obesity is a common, serious, and costly health problem, and CDC is working to control and prevent it.
Obesity is common. Healthy People 2020, which outlines the nation’s health goals for 2020, has set a target obesity prevalence of 30.6% for adults and 14.6% for children. However, according to the most recent NHANES data in 2009-2010, about 36% of U.S. adults ages 20 and over were obese, and about 17% of children ages 2-19 years old were obese.
Additionally, some adult populations are more affected by obesity than others. Non-Hispanic blacks are most likely to be obese (44.1%), followed by Hispanics (37.9%) and nonHispanic whites (32.6%).
Obesity is serious. Research has shown that obese people are at higher risk for developing heart disease, Type II diabetes, some cancers, high blood pressure, stroke, and sleeping and breathing problems among other conditions. Some of these are the leading causes of death in the U.S.
In addition to being at risk for developing some of these same health problems, children tend to also experience social and psychological effects like discrimination and low self-esteem. Moreover, obese children are more likely to become obese adults.
Obesity is costly. Obesity and its associated health problems have a significant economic impact on the U.S. health care system. In 2008 dollars, medical care costs for obesity were about $147 billion. On average, medical spending for obese people was $1429 (42%) greater than spending for people of normal weight in 2006.
CDC is working to make the healthy choice the easy choice. Initiatives are helping to change states and communities into places that strongly support healthy eating and active living.
CDC has funded states and communities to help saves lives and protect people from the problems of obesity and other chronic diseases through efforts that support changes in the places where Americans live, learn, work and play.
From 2011 to 2014, the Community Transformation Grant (CTG) Program helped to improve the health and wellness of all Americans.
The program helped communities design and carry out local programs that prevent chronic diseases such as obesity, diabetes, and heart disease.
There is no single or simple solution to the obesity epidemic. It is a complex problem and there has to be a multifaceted approach.
Policy makers, state and local organizations, business and community leaders, school, childcare and healthcare professionals, and individuals must work together to create an environment that supports a healthy lifestyle.
When it comes to weight loss, there is no lack of fad diets promising fast results. But such diets limit your nutritional intake, can be unhealthy, and tend to fail in the long run. The key to achieving and maintaining a healthy weight is not about short-term dietary changes. It is about a lifestyle that includes healthy eating, regular physical activity, and balancing the number of calories you consume with the number of calories your body uses.
CDC Recommended Obesity Prevention and Control Strategies
Promote the availability of affordable healthy food and beverages
Support healthy food and beverage choices
Encourage physical activity or limit inactivity among children and youth
Create safe communities that support physical activity
Encourage communities to organize for change
For a more detailed list of CDC recommended strategies visit: www.cdc.gov/mmwr/pdf/rr/rr5807.pdf
Resources are available to help address obesity in your state, community, or tribe.