Nearly half (42.8%) of U.S. adults were obese in 2017-18, according to a U.S. Centers for Diseases Control and Prevention report published Feb. 27.
Obesity data is calculated with the body mass index (BMI), which uses a person’s height and weight to determine whether they are underweight, average, overweight, obese or severely obese.
A CDC example explains that a 5-foot-9 person with a normal / healthy BMI would weigh between 128 and 168 pounds. They would be considered obese if they weighed 203 pounds or more.
Adults aged 40-59 had the highest levels of obesity (44.8%), followed by persons 60 and older (42.8%) and those aged 20-39 (40%).
Overall, men (43%) were slightly more likely than women (41.9%) to be obese.
Non-Hispanic black adults were most likely to be obese (49.6%), followed by Hispanics (44.8%), non-Hispanic whites (42.2%) and non-Hispanic Asians (17.4%).
Obesity has been on the rise over the past decade, increasing from 30.5% in 1999-2000 to nearly 43% in 2017-18.
After a slight decline from 2009-10 to 2011-12, obesity levels have steadily risen by nearly eight percentage points over the last six years.
Severe obesity has nearly doubled since 1999-2000, moving from 4.7% to 9.2%.
Obesity increases the likelihood of a range of conditions, including high blood pressure, Type 2 diabetes, stroke, sleep apnea and some cancers.
The full report is available here.