"The 5 Worst States for Obesity and the 5 Best" Review

Can you the guess the best and worst states for obesity? How does your state rate? Check out these findings from the study "Prevalence of Self-Reported Obesity Among U.S. Adults by State and Territory, BRFSS, 2015" (Source: 10 Trendy Health Foods That Can Threaten Your Waistline).

WORST #5: KANSAS


Over 34 percent of adults in Kansas reported being obese. That’s almost a 3 percent increase since 2014, and a 5 percent increase since 2011, according to the CDC. Those who are obese have a Body Mass Index (BMI) of 30 or higher. Health conditions associated with obesity include heart disease, stroke, Type 2 diabetes and certain types of cancer.

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WORST #4: MISSISSIPPI (TIE)


Mississippi tied with two other states for the second-place spot on our list. Since 2014, the rate increased by a tenth of a percent, from 35.5 to 35.6. Unfortunately, obesity isn’t Mississippi’s only issue. The America’s Health Rankings 2015 Annual Report named Mississippi the worst state for adolescent immunization, low birthrate, infant mortality rate, cardiovascular deaths and premature death. However, the state did get a nod for having the lowest disparity in health status between adults with a high school degree and adults without one.

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WORST #3: WEST VIRGINIA (TIE)


Like Mississippi, 35.6 percent of West Virginia adults reported being obese. Though the prevalence of obesity is high in the Mountain State, at least West Virginians haven't taken to the bottle. The America’s Health Rankings report named West Virginia healthiest in the country when it comes to binge drinking.

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WORST #2: ALABAMA (TIE)


In Alabama, 35.6 percent of adults reported being obese in 2015. In their report from that year, the CDC also collected percentages based on race and ethnicity. Although non-Hispanic black adults had the highest obesity rates in the country at 38.1 percent, that number was down 10 percent from the rate the CDC provided for the years 2011-2014. Regionally, the North American South had the highest obesity rate in the country, at 31.2 percent.

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WORST #1: LOUISIANA


More Louisiana adults reported being obese than any other state, topping our list at 36.2 percent. Louisiana has seen a steady increase in obese adults over the past few years, almost three percentage points up from 33.4 back in 2011. And people who struggle with obesity pay more for healthcare -- spending an average of $1,429 more on medical bills per year than those who are not obese. Read on for the five states with the lowest obesity rates and some CDC-recommended tips on how to prevent and manage obesity.

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BEST #5: CALIFORNIA


The Golden State slid into our top five roundup, with 24.2 percent of adults reporting being obese. Healthy eating is a major factor when it comes to obesity prevention. According to the CDC, it can reduce the onset of heart disease, high blood pressure and Type 2 diabetes. A healthy eating pattern includes a variety of vegetables, fruits, grains (at least half of which are whole grains), low-fat dairy products, proteins and oils. It also limits saturated and trans fats, sugar and sodium.

BEST #4: MONTANA


In Montana, 23.6 percent of adults reported being obese, making it our fourth best state for obesity. According to the State of Obesity, 2015 was the first year in the last decade that any state saw a statistically significant decrease in obesity rates. Montana was one of four states that experienced this drop; the other three were Minnesota, New York and Ohio. Knowing about caloric balance, or the number of calories you intake compared to the number of calories your body burns in a day, can also help you achieve weight loss.

BEST #3: HAWAII


The Aloha State ranks third on our list, with 22.7 percent of adults reporting being obese. The America’s Health Rankings Annual Report named Hawaii the healthiest state in 2015, due to low rates of preventable hospitalizations, few poor mental health days and (you guessed it) a low prevalence of obesity. Hawaii has consistently ranked in the top six since the report's launch in 1990.

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BEST #2: DISTRICT OF COLUMBIA


While it isn’t a state, Washington, D.C.’s obesity rate definitely warrants mention, beating 49 states out at 22.1 percent. Interestingly, the percentage of non-Hispanic white adults who reported being obese in the country’s capitol was staggeringly low, at 9.9 percent. The second lowest percent of non-Hispanic white adults with obesity was found in Hawaii, where 17.9 percent had obesity.

BEST #1: COLORADO


Colorado had fewer obese adults than any other state (or U.S. capital), with only 20.2 percent of adults reporting being obese in 2015. It also had the smallest amount of adults who reported being physically inactive, according to the America’s Health Rankings report. That’s a pretty big deal considering that physical inactivity is responsible for one in 10 deaths every year. According to the CDC, maintaining a healthy lifestyle hugely contributes to obesity prevention. They recommend that adults get at least 2 hours and 30 minutes (150 minutes) of moderate-intensity aerobic activity every week, which can include anything that gets your heart pumping. Simple activities such as walking, running, swimming and biking could drastically decrease your risk of developing obesity.

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How does knowing these stats influence your perspective of your local culture and experience with your personal trainer in Chicago? What are the weaknesses of this study? Is a self-reported study (like this) scientific enough to validate these conclusions?

Pictures Credit:
Livestrong.com-How does San Francisco rate for obesity? How does your state compare with the rest of the U.S.?

More to Read:
While many foods are still healthy with proper portion control, you may want to avoid the following list: "50 Foods You Should Never Eat".

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Article Credit:

Author: Michael Moody Fitness with excerpt sourced from the article " The 5 Worst States for Obesity and the 5 Best " on Livestrong.com.
"The 5 Worst States for Obesity and the 5 Best" Review
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Transform your life with Michael's self-help book Redefine Yourself here!