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Obesity Rate by State 2020

Someone who is considered to be obese has a BMI of 30.0 or higher. Obesity is a growing concern in the United States and around the world.

The United States ranks 12th in the world for obesity. According to the Center for Disease Control (CDC), approximately 36.9% of American adults age 20 and older were obese based on 2015-2016 data. 37.9% of men and 41.1% of women are considered to be obese in the United States. This is twice as many as three decades ago. Approximately 15% of children and teens are overweight; three times as many as there were in the 1980s.

Obesity is the result of several factors such as overeating, lack of physical activity, poor diet choices, genetics, metabolism, and culture. Americans are more likely to consume simple carbohydrates, convenient fast food and processed pre-packaged foods. These foods tend to be higher in calories, less filling, and less nutrient-dense, causing people to consume more calories than they need. This caloric surplus combined with a lack of physical activity and exercise causes weight gain over time.

Obesity can lead to increased health risks such as type 2 diabetes, nerve damage, kidney disease, high blood pressure, stroke, heart disease and certain types of cancer. Obesity is the second leading cause of preventable death behind tobacco use.

According to The State of Obesity, the most recent Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (BRFSS) data shows that nine states now have obesity rates above 35%. Between 2017 and 2018, Florida, Kansas, Minnesota, Missouri, New Mexico, New York, and Utah all saw increases in their obesity rates. Other states’ rates remained about the same.

The ten states with the lowest obesity rates are:

  1. Colorado (23%)
  2. District of Columbia (24.7%)
  3. Hawaii (24.9%)
  4. New Jersey (25.7%)
  5. Massachusetts (25.7%)
  6. California (25.8%)
  7. Montana (26.9%)
  8. Connecticut (27.4%)
  9. Vermont (27.5%)
  10. New York (27.6%)

Colorado’s low obesity rate can be attributed to its culture and lifestyle. Many residents enjoy outdoor activities, such as hiking, and are generally conscious of eating whole, nutrient-dense foods, and their own wellbeing. West Virginia and Mississippi are currently tied as the most obese state at 39.5%. West Virginia has the highest rate of type 2 diabetes in the United States, and Mississippi has the lowest life expectancy of 74.7 years.

Here are the 10 states with the highest rates of obesity:

  1. West Virginia (38.10%)
  2. Mississippi (37.30%)
  3. Oklahoma (36.50%)
  4. Iowa (36.40%)
  5. Alabama (36.30%)
  6. Louisiana (36.20%)
  7. Arkansas (35.00%)
  8. Kentucky (34.30%)
  9. Alaska (34.20%)
  10. South Carolina (34.10%)

Obesity Rate by State 2020

Obesity Rate by State 2020

State Obesity Rate 2020 Pop.
West Virginia38.10%1,778,070
Mississippi37.30%2,989,260
Oklahoma36.50%3,954,820
Iowa36.40%3,179,850
Alabama36.30%4,908,620
Louisiana36.20%4,645,180
Arkansas35.00%3,039,000
Kentucky34.30%4,499,690
Alaska34.20%734,002
South Carolina34.10%5,210,100
Ohio33.80%11,747,700
Indiana33.60%6,745,350
North Dakota33.20%761,723
Texas33.00%29,472,300
Nebraska32.80%1,952,570
Tennessee32.80%6,897,580
Missouri32.50%6,169,270
Kansas32.40%2,910,360
Michigan32.30%10,045,000
North Carolina32.10%10,611,900
Wisconsin32.00%5,851,750
South Dakota31.90%903,027
Delaware31.80%982,895
Georgia31.60%10,736,100
Pennsylvania31.60%12,820,900
Maryland31.30%6,083,120
Illinois31.10%12,659,700
Virginia30.10%8,626,210
Rhode Island30.00%1,056,160
Arizona29.50%7,378,490
Oregon29.40%4,301,090
Idaho29.30%1,826,160
Maine29.10%1,345,790
Wyoming28.80%567,025
Florida28.40%21,993,000
Minnesota28.40%5,700,670
New Mexico28.40%2,096,640
New Hampshire28.10%1,371,250
Washington27.70%7,797,100
Vermont27.60%628,061
New Jersey27.30%8,936,570
Connecticut26.90%3,563,080
Nevada26.70%3,139,660
Massachusetts25.90%6,976,600
New York25.70%19,440,500
Montana25.30%1,086,760
Utah25.30%3,282,120
California25.10%39,937,500
Hawaii23.80%1,412,690
Colorado22.60%5,845,530