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Obesity is getting bigger in the United States
July 7th, 2011
05:59 PM ET

Obesity is getting bigger in the United States

Two-thirds of all adults and about a third of all children and teenagers in the United States are overweight or obese according to a report release Thursday by the Trust for America's Health (TFAH) and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation (RWJF).

According to "F as in Fat: How Obesity Threatens America's Future 2011," adult obesity increased in 16 states during the past year and rates soared to 30% or more in these 12 states: Alabama, Arkansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, and West Virginia. Four years ago, only one state - Mississippi - had an adult obesity rate of more than 30%. No state showed a decrease  in it obesity rate in Thursday's report.

Nine of the 10 states with the highest adult obesity numbers are in the South. Mississippi, for the seventh year in a row, had the highest adult obesity rate at 34.4%. Colorado, at 19.8%, had the lowest, and in fact is the only state in the country with an adult obesity rate under 20%. Twenty years ago no rate was above 15%. The report found rates grew fastest in Alabama, Tennessee and Oklahoma and slowest in Colorado, Connecticut and the District of Columbia.

"There was a clear tipping point in our national weight gain over the last twenty years," said Jeff Levi, Executive director of TFAH.  "And we can't afford to ignore the impact obesity has on our health and corresponding health care spending."

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the medical costs associated with obesity are staggering– totaling about $147 billion in 2008.   More than 80% of people in this country with type-2 diabetes are overweight and new diagnoses doubled in 10 years, according to Thursday's report.  Overweight and obese people are at risk of developing high blood pressure and high cholesterol, risk factors for cardiovascular disease and stroke. They may also be at greater risk of colon, kidney and esophageal cancer.

African Americans, Latinos, those with low incomes and less education had the highest overall rates, topping 30 to 40% in many states. The report found about 33% of adults who made less than $15,000 a year or did not graduate from high school were obese.

The researchers found that a lack of access to fresh fruits, vegetables and other healthful foods in some neighborhoods and a dearth of safe community areas for families to walk and for children to play all factor into the obesity epidemic.

But there's more to it. "Portion sizes in restaurants are much larger than they have been, soft drinks at convenience stores are much larger than they have been," said Dr. James Marks, senior vice president of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. "When people have a larger size they will eat more. Snacking has gone up more and more. All of these things contribute."

"We've built inactivity into our lifestyles. We've designed communities around cars," said Levi. "Kids are watching TV and sitting around computers. We've found plenty of ways to entertain ourselves that don't include activity."

"The information in this report should spur us all - individuals and policymakers alike - to redouble our efforts to reverse this debilitating and costly epidemic," said Dr. Risa Lavizzo-Mourey, president and CEO of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. "Changing policies is an important way to provide children and families with vital resources and opportunities to make healthier choices easier in their day-to day-lives."

Recommendations include making sure all food and drinks sold in schools meet the most recent Dietary Guidelines for Americans, increasing access to quality and affordable foods, expanding the amount and intensity of physical activity in schools and in out-of-school programs, increasing physical activity by providing communities safe places to walk, bike and play, introducing pricing incentives to help people buy healthier foods and regulating how and where unhealthy foods are marketed to children.

Marks says what's particularly tragic is the increase in type 2 diabetes among younger adults and kids. "Since the 1970s, the rate of obesity has tripled or quadrupled in children," said Marks. "We've got an even larger problem coming in our children."


soundoff (344 Responses)
  1. Michael

    People have to want to change. The article is correct; our society, for the most part, is built around laziness.

    July 7, 2011 at 18:37 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Patrick

      Perfectly stated.. Wish there was a like button.. "LIKE"

      July 7, 2011 at 20:36 | Report abuse |
  2. Tommy

    Where us Obama' Michelle"s food Police

    July 7, 2011 at 18:49 | Report abuse | Reply
  3. Amma

    The secret to losing weight is a diabetes diet for NON diabetics that is now used in 10 countries. You eat fat and sugar and lose weight. The diet was created by a filmmaker and is used by health professionals to help people to lose weight easily

    see here SPIRITHAPPY.ORG

    July 7, 2011 at 18:55 | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Jen71

    Here's a crazy plan for weight loss-portion control and exercise. Pay attention to the serving sizes on the foods you eat, and just get up and walk for about 30 minutes a day. Unless there's a serious medical condition, what's so difficult about that? I lost over 20 pounds (and counting), and I'm keeping it off.

    July 7, 2011 at 19:25 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Vick

      Well Said!! I have seen many people lower their cholesterol, blood pressure, and maintain firm control over diabetes with a little discipline. Get moving more, and eat healthier foods, or at least smaller portions, this must be done consistently.
      There are a large group of eductaed people, who choose not to do what's best for their health, and continue to get fatter... amazing!

      July 8, 2011 at 10:01 | Report abuse |
  5. herrsonic

    Self-control and discipline ... not the easiest of things for weight-challenged people.

    July 7, 2011 at 19:39 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. npg

    in other words, poor people are NOT starving, they are the MOST OBESE...only in America

    July 7, 2011 at 19:39 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Judi O

      I thought that was kinda funny but not in a ha-ha kind of way.

      July 7, 2011 at 21:48 | Report abuse |
    • thinker

      Most obese, yes . . . but if many cases also rather malnourished, because they are not eating nutritious foods.

      July 7, 2011 at 23:14 | Report abuse |
    • Jo

      Yes, poor areas tend to be even more overweight than others and it`s not only something happening in America; no or small income means that you eat unhealthy food because you can`t afford something else...you don`t have to starve but you eat bad..hence the obesity...but for the most part, unless there`s some underlying medical condition, people are plain lazy and really don`t give a s..t about their health! I`ve been living in the US for more than two years, loved the country but I was impressed in a very bad way by how disgracefully obese people were, something I`ve never ever seen in Europe! I used to walk miles just to find a decent grocery store with fresh vegetables and almost hated the food and the insanely large portions at the restaurants! A heart attack in the plate! I lost 5kg during the first year simply because I couldn`t eat all that junk! So who says you can`t lose weight in the US?:))) But seriously, it`s almost criminal what is going on!

      July 8, 2011 at 03:24 | Report abuse |
  7. doublescheckem

    147 billion, seriously? that's how much they cost us? not to mention taking up all the space on elevators, narrow hallways, public seating, any crowded places where they take up space that could have been used for 3-4 people, breathing heavily all over you after walking a block, sweating profusely and reeking of rotten milk on a summer afternoon. it's extremely rude and apparently costly to be overweight. if only america were a giant water park where you'd be restricted from doing things based on your ability to fit in a water tube...there are no fat people in heaven, they all go to hell. can't wait to die!

    July 7, 2011 at 19:44 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Emma

      Yikes... Someone has childhood issues that havent been dealt with...

      July 8, 2011 at 01:52 | Report abuse |
    • Jo

      Are you serious?? If so, get some psychiatric help pretty soon cause you have big issues, far bigger than those of obese people...your mind is kinda sick buddy....

      July 8, 2011 at 03:29 | Report abuse |
    • FirstResponder

      Don't forget: Every time a heavy person drives their car up a hill, or takes off in an airplane, they are burning EXTRA FUEL to carry that extra weight around. This is a very real and very significant issue. Yes, to be fair, airlines would charge fares based on total weight of the traveler plus their luggage.

      July 8, 2011 at 08:16 | Report abuse |
  8. anemone

    Here's an even better plan – eat mostly fruits and vegetables, cut out processed sugar, and eat AS MUCH AS YOU WANT!!! Naturally low calorie healthy foods like fruits and veggies can be eaten till your stomach is about to burst and you still wouldn't get fat. As for the sugar, after a few days you won't be craving it anymore. Instead, when your body wants sugar, you'll be craving fruit! I lost 10 pounds by just switching up what I eat already.

    July 7, 2011 at 19:55 | Report abuse | Reply
    • anemone

      Also, junk food like McDonald's and Cheetos and whatnot only load you up with unnecessary sugar, fat, salt, and "flavor", and after a while anything else is tasteless because you'be become accustomed to such mass amounts of each. If you never had junk food, and decided to make, say a hamburger at home, I can guarantee you it won't need to have 60 grams of fat, a full days sodium, and artificial (or "natural") flavoring to taste delicious!

      July 7, 2011 at 20:00 | Report abuse |
    • jjj4567

      What you write it true for many people, but this is not a diet that most Americans can afford. I live in an affluent area and the adults eat like this and get exercise. Obesity is about 5%. By the way the same cannot be said of the kids. The kids are heavier than the adults. Parents give lip service to healthy foods, but then take them to McD's and Dunkin.

      July 8, 2011 at 08:27 | Report abuse |
  9. Tracy

    I think there's a relationship between food and unhappiness that could afford to be addressed. Food addiction is likely a culprit for many people.

    July 7, 2011 at 20:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  10. Karen

    Weight related illnesses cost all of us who pay for our healthcare. Comorbidities related to obesity cost us all either in increased health insurance premiums or taxes for Medicaid. Pretty much, if you don't have to pay you don't care, just take.

    July 7, 2011 at 20:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  11. Alex

    The article has omitted person-to-person spread of obesity in social network. See Christakis and Fowler 2007 paper in NEJM. Also, heavier people around you make you fat by creating a norm of "being heavy is all right" and by making you forget what normal weight is – http://www.freakonomics.com/2011/03/28/guess-why-some-overweight-adolescents-dont-think-theyre-overweight/ .

    July 7, 2011 at 21:38 | Report abuse | Reply
  12. Andy

    I am angry at Health authorities who have misled us for 60 years. Since the late 1960's I have exercised (run 3 mi /day), watched calories, eaten healthy whole grains, fruits & vegetables and still struggled with weight gain. I never understood why I had to fight my cravings for carbs of any type every second of the day and night. After 40 years I finally gave up 10 years ago and am now obese. Then I read "Why We Get Fat" and I now understand WHY. And now my cravings are almost gone, I feel great and the weight is coming off. And I had to completely ignore the well meant but utterly wrong guidance we have been told since the late 50's.

    July 7, 2011 at 21:52 | Report abuse | Reply
    • chris

      i'm really sorry you have to be told something this simple and couldn't figure it our yourself.

      July 7, 2011 at 23:44 | Report abuse |
    • Liz

      I know what you mean Andy! I read the same book and felt so angry at the insane amount of bad advice that the medical community routinely gives out to people. Then, sanctimonious jerks look at you like you're disgusting and have no control when they have no comprehension of what is really involved when you gain weight. Wake up people! Its not calories in, calories out! The law of thermodynamics actually DOES NOT apply when talking about weight gain. Its all about hormone regulation. Too much sugar and processed food causes an overabundance of insulin, which can ultimately result in insulin resistance (type 2 diabetes). During that process, the insulin is telling your body to store your energy, not burn it, regardless of how active or sedate you are. Many overweight people are actually malnourished, their organs are not getting the proper nutrition b/c of how their hormones are regulating their caloric intake. So, instead of looking for ways to punish fat people for being "disgusting" (you have no idea how often I hear that), perhaps we should be researching solutions for what is clearly a medical problem, not a behavioral problem. Btw, I was overweight, did a ton of research, realized diets were bogus attempts at profitting on people's insecurities and stopped the cycle of yo-yo dieting. Once I quit dieting and learned how to regulate my hormones thru eating the right foods in moderation, the weight came off almost effortlessly. It took time and small habit changes, but it worked. Its not fat that kills folks... its sugar. Do your research!

      July 8, 2011 at 10:43 | Report abuse |
  13. evidencepls

    Saw a post where it looks like scientists have found that when fat touches your tongue, it causes your intestine to produce "marijuana-like" chemicals that make you eat more fat. Kind of like why you can't eat just one fry, or chip , or however the saying goes.

    July 7, 2011 at 22:02 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. joe

    Science has recently proved that if you get your fat ass off the couch, stop eating crap non stop, and actually make healthy choices...You won't be obese! SHOCKER.
    The problem is that eveyone makes exucses in this country for the fat slobs out there.
    Don't bother with the "I am genetically pre-disposed" non-sense.
    You want to look and feel better...Change your habits, period.

    July 7, 2011 at 22:44 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Mike

      you are correct to a point. everyone has a different body type. some people are just naturally larger than others. it doesn't mean they're genetically pre-disposed to be morbidly obese, but not everyone is a twig or even can be.

      July 7, 2011 at 23:53 | Report abuse |
  15. HM1972

    It may sound harsh, but I agree 100%!
    As a critical care Registered Nurse I've seen far too many people with health problems brought on by nothing but their bad (conscious) choices. What a waste of health care (private or public insurance) dollars. I know we are a country where people would say it's their choice if they want to eat like a slob for years and then blame everyone but themselves, smoke until guaranteed to get some kind of cancer, or drink to liver failure / cancer; so be it. Pay higher insurance rates and take the responsibility.

    July 7, 2011 at 22:58 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. Fatty McPatty

    Just returned from the kitchen with more chips. What'd I miss?

    July 7, 2011 at 23:32 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Emily

      thats my first honest good laugh this morning, thanks fatty.

      now gimme the goddam remote control

      July 8, 2011 at 07:50 | Report abuse |
  17. LOVE_FACTS

    There was a time that we used to go to circus to see 250 pound human beings! Now, they're roaming all over the malls for free! And feel proud of it! How times change!

    July 7, 2011 at 23:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  18. jess

    So glad you're all perfect people. How about shutting up and looking at WHY there are such disparities? Iknow in the state I'm in the cost of produce has gone up sooo much I'm spending 40-60 more at the grocery every two weeks. Which is a minor problem as my family is vegetarian. I totally sympathize with ppl that are poor. You pay 3.00 for 4 medium apples or get 4 boxes of mac and cheese. Which do you think would be chosen? And don't discount genetics. Ive struggled to stay at a healthy weight, i can show you pictures of my grandfather, great-grandmother all young and still morbidly obese... THEY LIVED THROUGH THE GREAT DEPRESSION. So stop being such heartless human beings and instead of insulting them, figure out how to solve the problems.

    July 7, 2011 at 23:37 | Report abuse | Reply
    • chris

      you can eat mac and cheese if you get off the sofa and exercise.

      tell me why i have to help someone else figure out how to be personally responsible and use common sense?!?

      July 7, 2011 at 23:46 | Report abuse |
    • jjj4567

      Thank you for trying to explain the cost issue. Produce costs a lot. When we were short on funds I found out that at our store on Mon. and Thurs. AM they put produce out for quick sale. It was often 10% what it cost normally. It meant that we ate a lot of 1 or 2 things a week, but it got us through. Funny thing is that now I can't even pick stuff up from this cart because I inside me I think that there is a mom with young kids who needs the bargain more than I do.

      July 8, 2011 at 08:36 | Report abuse |
  19. LOVE_FACTS

    Fat, lazy, crude, ill-mannered, dumbed down to the core- not quite the dream that the country was built upon! It will take at least two generations to get the system right again! That is, if we make it to that point with some semblance of sanity, intellect, and work ethic!

    July 7, 2011 at 23:39 | Report abuse | Reply
    • chris

      society will never correct itself as long as there are free handouts and no penalties for being irresponsible, lazy, and lack common sense. at least not in this country with all it's politically correctness and liberal special interest groups defending every ridiculous trend.

      July 7, 2011 at 23:47 | Report abuse |
    • LOVE_FACTS

      Chris, I agree with you on the while irresponsibility stuff, but in terms of political ideologies, I have seen it across the board. So many of my conservative and liberal friends have bad habits! And both see more fault with the other!

      July 7, 2011 at 23:51 | Report abuse |
    • Mike

      Wow Chris – way to bring politics into this and blame liberals ... take a look at most of your conservative politicians ... they're more obese than the liberal ones. Try again.

      July 7, 2011 at 23:56 | Report abuse |
  20. LOVE_FACTS

    @Jess, the whole "genetics= I cannot help it" excuse has become old. There's science to prove that you can change habits and control the impact of genetics! And btw, 70-80% of the population cant hide under that excuse. It can't hide anywhere. Period!

    July 7, 2011 at 23:42 | Report abuse | Reply
  21. Mike

    I think you're being a bit harsh, although I agree with you. Smokers and excessive drinkers often have to pay more for their health insurance through their employers. Why not obese people? Not all fat people are fat because they have poor eating habits; some people are just naturally bigger, but a doctor can determine that. People who are obese because of emotional problems should be forced to seek counseling if they want to keep their insurance. Alcoholics often have to seek help to keep their jobs. What's the difference?

    July 7, 2011 at 23:46 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Jennifer

      Absolutely right.

      July 8, 2011 at 07:26 | Report abuse |
    • Mikie

      It's NOT being harsh – it's being truthful! Unfortunately, most people don't want to face the truth – such a very, very sad state. Personally, I believe FAT people should do something about their very serious problem (being fat) by getting off their butts and doing something other than eating junk food, drinking soda, etc. Maybe even try walking rather than sitting in front of the TV all day? I am 6' – 0" and weigh 148 lbs – since I was a kid and thats a real long time ago. I eat all organic and walk at least 5 miles every day. It's not a big deal to do – really!!!

      July 8, 2011 at 10:09 | Report abuse |
    • noteabags

      I agree. It's the truth. If you travel abroad you will be able to spot an American from afar by their girth and waddle.

      July 8, 2011 at 10:19 | Report abuse |
    • ITsok

      Honestly, ive been on both sides of the fence, skinny people that have never experienced overweight issues do not know the difficulty involved with weight loss, so please be respectful to others when making comments. Additionally, just because your skinny, that does not make you healthy, so you are as likely to inhereit or contrive desease or illness, just like an obese individual. Obese people, Im sorry for the unwanted weight, and sometimes life throws you in a spiril, that only you can pull yourself out of. Ive changed my life in the last year by changing diet and way of life. Ill try to walk more often, incorporating additional exercise through my day, just by going to work, or taking stairs, etc... Diet is a big portion of weightloss as well, Im as guilty as anyone out there, but I have changed my thinking from weight loss, too being healthy. Instead of being down on the expected weightloss results, I avoid focusing on the results, and started focusing on being healthy. Now I incorporate exercise into my daily commute, and try to cut out carbs moderately. Meaning I minimize the sugar, breads/pastas, as well as red meats from my diet. Typically, i stick to these goals during business week, then on the weekend I cheat a little, but this is good for our body, so it doesnt get use to a non-carb regimine. Its a simple life style change, but it will work. Good luck!

      July 8, 2011 at 11:56 | Report abuse |
    • Blah

      "Some people are naturally bigger."

      Common myth.

      True, some people are prone to being somewhat overweight, but there is a huge difference between being overweight and being obese. It's an incredibly small fraction of the population that has a genetic defect that causes obesity.

      July 8, 2011 at 12:46 | Report abuse |
    • Suki

      And make the elderly pay more for insurance...they could break a hip! Make the ugly people pay more insurance for plastic surgery because they're so hard to look at! It will also make the people lucky enough to be born perfect feel even better about themselves, and elevate their status to look down even further on the weak! Being ugly, fat, poor, old or anything "less" in America is a CRIME, and must be punished!

      July 8, 2011 at 12:56 | Report abuse |
  22. LOVE_FACTS

    I hate to see tax dollars go to treat people who fall sick because they eat a dozen donuts for breakfast, a whole cow for lunch, and a whole pig for dinner! How can they blame only the illegal immigrants for driving up the healthcare costs! You've got to serve a better role-model to people for what it means to be an 'American!'

    July 7, 2011 at 23:52 | Report abuse | Reply
  23. The_Mick

    Our society isn't built around any more laziness than in the past. But it is built around the TV, Internet, DS, etc. and locked in the house. In the 60's, a pre-teen could bike a mile to a friend's house and then go play in the woods. Now he's not allowed out of the house without a parent because we have allowed society's value system to fall apart. And we've made it easy to not get out of the car. You can drive-through for fast food, prescriptions, and beer. I needed a mirror for the bicycle I recently bought for EXERCISE. Instead of walking into a store I ordered it from Amazon.com. And how do I use that bike? The local streets with no pedestrian or slow-speed areas would get me killed beyond a mile. I had to buy a trunk-mounted rack and drive the bike to a county pedestrian/bike trail. I'm going to try to do the entire 11 mile BWI Airport (Baltimore) Trail on Saturday on a 34.5 lb mountain bike. I've cycled 86.6 miles since May 23. I've lost 2 lbs. Every little bit helps!

    July 7, 2011 at 23:53 | Report abuse | Reply
    • jjj4567

      I think all of the little bits of automation hurt us too. The remotes, the automatic windows on cars, dishwashers that really can get the gunk out of the pan, emails with attachments so you don't have to walk papers down the hall, scanning a credit card with a swipe rather than looking for correct change, etc.. It all adds up.

      When I have overscheduled myself I find that I put weight on very quickly. I am so busy managing automated tasks that don't use my body at all. Weight loss comes from my leisure activities.

      July 8, 2011 at 08:45 | Report abuse |
    • Alexis

      all the things you just listed, qualify as laziness in my book. These new technologies we "enjoy" are increasing the laziness, whether food and exercise, or how we interact with people (lets text/fb/tweet people so we can avoid them yet interact with them at the same time in a hollow non-interpersonal based way)

      July 8, 2011 at 09:49 | Report abuse |
    • jjj4567

      Is it laziness to take on extra work? I know that the times when I do less physical activity I am spending more time working for $$. When I work fewer hours I do more around the house, go on hikes with friends, or garden. For me weight gain = work.

      July 8, 2011 at 11:01 | Report abuse |
  24. Mike

    If people walked more, relied less on cars, and used public transit in conjunction with walking people would be healthier. That kind of mentality would also lessen our society's dependence on fast food because less people would be using the drive-up window. Everything's a give and take. You mention amazon.com; I shop there all the time, use my computer a lot ... I also spend 90 minutes in the gym five days per week, walk from home to the bus stop and then from the bus stop to work ... I eat right and I don't overindulge. I'm not a twig by any means. I've got some bulk because I'm just naturally a stocky person. For me the trick was turning that bulk into lean muscle.

    July 8, 2011 at 00:01 | Report abuse | Reply
  25. The plain TRUTH !! and nothing but the truth

    America : the nation of the fat People. And the land of the dunder heads ! . The home of the stupid people whom their gorvernment tasks complete advantage of them but they are to stupid to see whats right in front of the own faces ; An out of control government !!!!

    July 8, 2011 at 00:01 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Alexis

      You ought to proofread and hit spellcheck before you go accusing people of being dunderheads.

      July 8, 2011 at 09:50 | Report abuse |
  26. TheTruth

    @Chris: Don't blame liberals for the obesity. Most of these obese states are RED STATES. And Michelle Obama is trying to do something about obese kids, but YOU righties can't handle it and call her the food police or cry socialism. Grow up.

    July 8, 2011 at 00:05 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Alexis

      If Michelle Obama says "the sky is blue" the Republicans will automatically insist it is purple and that anything anyone does that they do not agree with is a socialist – especially if they are black.

      July 8, 2011 at 09:51 | Report abuse |
  27. jeremy

    Now what are they gonna do next? Start charging like 5 bucks for a 2 liter bottle of Coke? Like they give a shi1 about our health anyways. I mean let's face it, we are over 300 million in the USA already. Just let me, and the other fat people die off so we won't become so overpopulated. I am on psyc meds that make me fat as hell. So maybe that can contribute to some of the obesity issues. People, like me, are becoming crazier and crazier and need psyc meds like anti-psychotics and antidepressants to just let them live!

    July 8, 2011 at 00:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. Julie

    Obesity is caused by three ingredients that weren't in the food supply 20 years ago. In 1996 the Feds allowed a new lab made protein into the food supply, the cause of many allergies. HFCS, isoflavinoids from soy, and RGBH all CAUSE OBESITY. The Corporations that manufacture these chemicals that we eat also make the drugs to treat the illnesses they cause. We as a nation are being slowly poisoned. Just do some basic research on google, verify this for yourselves and change to Oregon Tilth organic foods and magically lose weight and get your health back. Screw the corporations that think we're just for their profits! We need to take control back! Eat whatever you like, just change brands, read the ingredient label and avoid those three chemicals, as well as anything with phoshpate in it – it sucks calcium up and causes osteoporosis! Canola oil will cause cirhosis of the liver. IF you can't pronounce it or don't know where it comes from, don't eat it. Simple. And buy local.

    July 8, 2011 at 01:07 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Prettygreenbird

      I thought it was just people consuming more calories than they expended. Silly me.

      July 8, 2011 at 02:07 | Report abuse |
  29. The Truth Hurts

    These hulking land whales disgust me as they continuously shovel Ding Dongs, Cheetos, and pizza into their gaping maws while washing it all down with 64oz of Coke. And nobody likes the lack of basic hygiene that inflicts these sorrowful creatures. Smelling of spoiled cheese and having donut crumbs all over your tent-like shirt isn't going to endear you to anyone. Have some dignity and self respect, people!

    Whenever I see one of these human blobs trying to perform a simple task like climbing a flight of steps, their faces beet red and covered with a sheen of sweat while breathing like a drowning person, I make a mental bet on whether the thing will keel over with a heart attack before they finish. Given the awful consequences fatties are having on the rate of diabetes, cancer, and coronary disease, I can understand why health insurance rates are going through the roof and why gluttony is one of the seven deadly sins.

    July 8, 2011 at 01:24 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Jah

      +100 couldn't have said it any better

      July 8, 2011 at 09:43 | Report abuse |
    • Cathy

      Thou hypocrite-remove the beam from your own eye, and you will more clearly see to remove it from your neighbor's eye. No-one on this earth is without flaw. Wear a sign with your weaknesses and imperfections on the front of your shirt, and I'm sure you would be considered disgusting by many as well.

      July 8, 2011 at 13:38 | Report abuse |
  30. Emma

    This article is making me hungry.... Hahaha

    July 8, 2011 at 01:56 | Report abuse | Reply
  31. Prettygreenbird

    Maybe we should start ridiculing fat people more. The fat acceptance movement is sick.

    July 8, 2011 at 02:06 | Report abuse | Reply
  32. sugerdot

    People are so retarded. Poor people are fat because they cant affored to eat healthy. vegtables and lean meats are 3 times as much as a pack of hotdogs and buns with chips. Also if your not busy "working" and just sitting around because you dont have a job and money wat else can you do? The Real problem is not haveing money.

    July 8, 2011 at 02:24 | Report abuse | Reply
    • riprap

      Stay away from lean meats. They are not nutritionally complete for human consumption.
      Carbs cause weight gain.

      July 8, 2011 at 06:14 | Report abuse |
  33. Acropolis

    Did you know that they use a fork and a knife in Europe, sitting at a table, eating only three times a day ? Might help digestion.

    July 8, 2011 at 02:27 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. flarnkingsgargle

    Corn is subsidized. Corn is used in just about everything, whether it's feeding livestock, high-fructose corn syrup in soda, or corn starch in various other foods. So if corn wasn't subsidized and corn-based products weren't so cheap, maybe people would consume other things that are better for them??? That's my hypothesis.

    July 8, 2011 at 02:29 | Report abuse | Reply
  35. DiamondSky

    Wake up Sunday morning and go to church. Dress modestly. Talk in clean language. Stop watching garbages on TV and playing computer games. Don't go into promiscuity, espcially if you are obese. Imagine everyone is after USA and try to excel.

    July 8, 2011 at 03:06 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. DiamondSky

    Don't relax all the time. It's bad both for your character and for your brain. Walk straight and sit up straight as much possible. Be respectful. Dress properly and do things with good postures. Fast once a week for God and to remember the 2 billion hungry humans. Give some hard time to your physical body; it does good to you.

    July 8, 2011 at 03:10 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. DiamondSky

    Americans, read the Bible in order to find the proper purpose of life. Everything negative is happening to you because you disrespect God though you started out as a godly nation. Let's not relx or pig out like purposeless fools on a dying planet.

    July 8, 2011 at 03:14 | Report abuse | Reply
    • riprap

      Guilt does not work to lose weight, please keep your god crap to yourself.

      July 8, 2011 at 06:12 | Report abuse |
    • Jah

      Fat Belt = Bible Belt. He will not absolve you from eating ho-hos

      July 8, 2011 at 09:45 | Report abuse |
  38. Ebolter

    Fat is as fat does ( stop stuffing your face!) There is hope...

    July 8, 2011 at 03:48 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. kim

    If a person eats nothing, they will starve but if a person eats mainly cheap carbs (white bread, white pasta), they will become obese. Cheap carbs are pretty much all poor people can afford to eat. Lean meat and produce are very expensive in most places. This is one of the reasons why so many obese people also happen to be poor people.

    No matter how much the obese are made to feel badly about it, insults like I've read on here won't make things better or change the facts. It takes positive action not condemnation.

    July 8, 2011 at 05:02 | Report abuse | Reply
    • riprap

      Lean meat is not nutritionally complete. We must have fat in the diet.

      July 8, 2011 at 06:11 | Report abuse |
  40. Kaiviertel

    The one thing that drives me nuts about articles like this is the absolute lack of blame to the largest culprits adding to weight gain. The fast food industry and the refreshment industry has been scheming for 40 years on how to keep their profit margins up. One of the only ways to do that is to make people eat more. There has been a slow and steady plan to get more Americans dependent on fast food and replacing healthy refreshments with soda. Soda machines in school, 20 oz. soda coming out of those machines.. It is friggin ridiculous! And FYI, it was all planned out in boardrooms of those industries. So, America, STOP eating with your stomach and eat with your mind! (for all of you that think conspiracy theorist, read "Food Politics" by Marion Nestle, "Fast Food Nation" by Eric Schlosser, "The Omnivores Dilemma" by Michael Pollan and many more...)

    July 8, 2011 at 05:09 | Report abuse | Reply
  41. shariemery123

    Search online for "123 Samples" if you are looking for famous brands samples. It is the best and I always have success.

    July 8, 2011 at 05:36 | Report abuse | Reply
  42. riprap

    Watch the you tube video "Sugar the bitter truth". An explanation of how the liver metabolizes certain foods explains why people get fat.

    July 8, 2011 at 06:09 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. Bri

    We need to start looking at food as an addiction. Just like people are addicted to heroin or cocaine. The way foods are produced in our society today produces a craving sensation that is not to be underestimated.

    Eating healthy is no joke. and if you body is used to huge insulin spikes all the time by eating HI GI sugars, then you will continue craving these types of foods.

    July 8, 2011 at 07:20 | Report abuse | Reply
  44. Bill

    I do not think many people, especially young people, cook from scratch any more. We have a culture where we want things – fast. Cooking takes time and it is easier to just buy fast or processed food. If you look at all the cooking infomercials they explain how fast some item cooks food. We do not like balanced meals, we like meat. We like desserts. We like to feel 'full.' As soon as we fell a little hungry we have to get something, somewhere to eat. We eat junk food for lunch.

    We have AC in our homes, cars and all buildings. We have come to hate the heat and do not go out in the summer. No one walks. We buy exercise equipment that one month later turns into a clothing rack. Exercise hurts muscles and we do not like to feel pain. You muscles ache, take a pill.

    When you eat out the waitress always asked if want a drink and you get a drink that has sugar in it. Restaurants give larger and larger portions and we feel like we should clean our plates because it is wrong and wasteful to leave food. We drink soda daily not because we are thirsty but because it is a habit, something you do every day. We love beer. Snack food is a little reward bag that just makes you feel good. Diets do not work because people go on them to lose weight not to permanently change their life style. Once you lose the weight you stop the diet. We can always look at someone that is fatter than we are and say, "I'm not that fat look at him/her." We watch TV shows about people who weight 1,000 pounds and think of how disgusting the person is but we are overweight.

    This all started after World War 11 when everything that was sold was created to make life easier. Ads used to state that their product would accomplish something faster with less effort and you would have more free time, more leisure time. This continues to this day. Free time to do what? Watch TV, sit behind a computer monitor (which I am doing), sit at work- sit, sit and sit some more. Sit. then eat, then sit. Have a few stints put in your arteries, then in go back to sitting and eating. Life is easy and good in America, everyone around the world wants to have what we have. It is a great life.

    July 8, 2011 at 07:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. Jennifer

    TWO WORDS: FOOD STAMPS! It's the government's fault that they do not have the proper controls to prevent abuse of food stamps, and to limit the kinds of foods that people can purchase. For instance: NO SODA. Hey, let's start there. When you are feeding people with taxpayers money, who would "starve" without this government assistance, why should they be choosers? Why should they automatically have the right to purchase cheetos? It is a GIFT, not a privilege. We need some major reform.

    July 8, 2011 at 07:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. gabor47

    Jen71 wrote: "Here's a crazy plan for weight loss-portion control and exercise. Pay attention to the serving sizes on the foods you eat, and just get up and walk for about 30 minutes a day."

    Among many myths, this is a popular one. Given a 5'4" tall, 180 pound heavy, 25 years old women, daily 30 minutes (moderate pace) walk will use up 143 calories. A plain single quarter pound cheeseburger is over 300 calories. What people don't realize, that keeping weight in balance is a far more complicated process than "walking 30 minutes a day". I used to run a diet clinic (one of the very few, which is not aimed for money, but REALLY aimed people to lose weight), with significant success (no, not 100%, in fact far from it, but my success rate was far above the average). Losing weight (or keeping weight on a certain healthy level) is a difficult task. I could write a book on this, but it would get lost among the zillions of books which promises miracle diets. There are no miracle diets. The metabolism of the human body is remarkably stable, losing or gaining weight is the result of the food input (calories, energy) and the energy usage (output) of the body. That depends on multiple factors, it would be too long to list and explain here. I wrote a computer program which HONESTLY calculates all of the above. I analyze every single patient who comes to me with the intention to lose weight and advice accordingly. That is the only honest and long term successful method. Too bad I can't write down here my real name and where I could be found.

    Oh yes, and the food culture would have to be changed too, but that's another story. Until the country will not pick up this problem such as it did about smoking, expect no improvement.

    July 8, 2011 at 08:41 | Report abuse | Reply
  47. Tom

    Everyone needs to remember, that they changed the definition of overweight and obese about 20 years ago. So any comparison to weight studies prior to that have no meaning. Also, looking at weight alone does not take into account muscle density. A person who lifts weight regularly and eats as directed can weigh into the overweight range and still be healthy. The focus should not be on weight as a primary means of determining health, but body proportion from the chest to stomach to waist and level of activity for that person.

    July 8, 2011 at 08:55 | Report abuse | Reply
    • jjj4567

      The definition of "overweight" not the definition of "obese" changed. Obese is a BMI over 30 it was then and it is now. When you compare %obese there should be no need to correct for the shift in the definition. The definition of overweight is what changed. The folks who wrote the report know about the change and if you look at the report you can find out how they took it into account.

      July 8, 2011 at 12:09 | Report abuse |
  48. From Kentucky

    Most of the people in Kentucky are obese because almost all are on welfare and get foot stamps from the government. They can't afford to do anything else but eat. It is mania at at grocery store at the first of the month.

    July 8, 2011 at 09:19 | Report abuse | Reply
  49. Lindsey

    Out of one pocket, we pay billions of tax dollars to support the production of expensive, disease-causing foods (preservatives, fats, HFC). Out of the other pocket, we pay medical bills that are too high because our overweight population consumes too much of those rich, disease-causing foods. It's sad that our tax dollars are actually used to make our society sicker and keep our health insurance costs high. As for me, I haven't eaten fast food in over a year and have not missed it one bit!

    July 8, 2011 at 09:38 | Report abuse | Reply
  50. NotObese

    Need some sort of incentive to stay fit. No medicare/medicaid if you're above a certain weight:height ratio. Not welfare if you're a smoker, etc.. While some may see it as harsh, it would turn us in the right direction. It's time we have accountability. Not just in this issue, but many, many others.

    Moral of the story: I'm tired of paying for these people to buy McDonalds and cigarettes.

    July 8, 2011 at 09:38 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Lindsey

      Exactly...people won't change until the pain of staying the same is greater than the pain of change.

      July 8, 2011 at 09:40 | Report abuse |
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Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.