Projected Prevalence of Obesity
The forecast calls for fatness.
The study, released August 2008 in the journal Obesity, suggests that by the year 2030, nearly every American will be overweight or obese.
Currently, figures from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention put the prevalence of overweight and obesity in adults at about 66 percent. But lead study author Dr. Youfa Wang of the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health in Baltimore says that if current overweight and obesity trends continue, 86 percent of Americans could be overweight or obese by the year 2030.
Even more troubling, the authors note, "By 2048, all American adults would become overweight or obese."
See the complete study from author Dr. Youfa Wang, click here.
Dr. Wang’s work has helped document the growing global obesity epidemic. Several of his studies have raised the awareness of this pressing issue among public health professionals, policymakers and the general public. Examples include a number of widely cited studies such as the 2002 article in American Journal of Clinical Nutrition, which has been cited over 500 times since its publication. The study examined the childhood obesity trends in four large countries on different continents. (See, “Trends of obesity and underweight in older children and adolescents in the United States, Brazil, China, and Russia.”)
In collaboration with the International Obesity Taskforce (IOTF), he and co-author Dr. Tim Lobstein analyzed available data from over 50 countries and studied the changes over time in the prevalence of overweight and obesity in children and projected future levels. They showed that prevalence had increased in almost all countries for which trends data were available. Exceptions were found among school-age children in Russia and to some extent Poland during the 1990s, and among preschool children in some low-income countries. (See, “Worldwide trends in childhood overweight and obesity. Int J Pediatr Obes. 2006;1(1):11-25.)
Obesity Trends Are On The Rise
Excess body weight is recognized as one of the most serious health threats in the world, especially in the United States. According to the US Department of Health & Human Services Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, there has been a dramatic increase in obesity rates across the U.S during the past 20 years. Results from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) indicate that an estimated 66 percent of U.S. adults are either overweight or obese, and the level of obesity continues to grow.* Projected escalation of the problem in the US is especially troublesome―by 2015 experts forecast that 82% of the adult population will be overweight, with over half the population (53%) classified as obese.
The “Globesity” Problem Is Not Confined to the West
Obesity rates are particularly high in some of the world’s most developed and industrialized nations and the U.S leads the epidemic among major Western countries. Shockingly, there are many countries with more than two-thirds of the adult population now considered overweight. Referred to as “globesity,” the global obesity problem is nearing epidemic proportions in many countries, and surprisingly, it is not restricted to industrialized nations anymore. Since 2002, obesity rates have been growing faster in Asia-Pacific, Latin America and North America than they have in other parts of the world. And while obesity rates have been declining in Latin America in recent years, four of the "Obesity Top 10" countries are still found there.
*Source: Centers for Disease Control & Prevention National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES)