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People are getting fatter, but fewer than ever are trying to lose weight - study

09/03/2017

People are getting fatter, but fewer than ever are trying to lose weight - studyDespite the fact the number of people who are overweight or obese has risen over the past 30 years, fewer people are actually attempting to shed weight, according to a new study, the findings of which were published in JAMA.

Around two thirds of the adult population in the United States are obese or overweight, putting them at increased risk of heart disease, stroke, diabetes, and other chronic diseases.

However, new research has found that even though there has been a significant rise in the number of people who are overweight or obese since the 1980s, the percentage of U.S. adults who are trying to lose weight has fallen.

For their research, study co-author Dr. Jian Zhang and her colleagues from the Georgia Southern University, analysed the data of 27,350 U.S. adults aged between 20 and 59 years.

The analyses revealed that the rates of overweight and obesity increased by 13%, from 53% in 1988-1994 to 66% in 2009-2014. Furthermore, the researchers also found that the percentage of people who attempted to lose weight over the same period actually dropped by 7%, from 56% in 1988-1994 to 49% in 2009-2014.

At present, people are deemed to be overweight or obese depending on their body mass index (BMI). A BMI of 25 to under 30 is considered overweight, while a BMI of 30 or above is considered obese.

A healthy diet and regular physical activity are proven to help curb weight gain, which is why we should all make a conscientious effort to watch what we eat and exercise more.

[Recommended read: BMI Wrongly Labelling People Unhealthy, Finds New Research]

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