Mississippi leads the nation in weight problems and highest number of adults who are inactive.
Going into the holiday season, a great time to put on a few extra pounds, a new report in the Journal of American Medicine says already one-third of American adults are obese or overweight.
As reported by WalletHub and cited on knoxnews.com, almost 83 million Americans were classified as completely inactive in 2014, the highest number since 2007. With traditional Thanksgiving dinners and Christmas parties looming on the horizon, with their rich foods and tasty sweet treats, the likelihood of the number of obese and overweight adults increasing during this period is pretty high.
According to the findings of WalletHub, every state in the union has at least a 20 percent obesity rate, and 19 states have rates in the 30-35 percent range. Regional rankings show the Midwest in first place (or last) with a rate of 30.7 percent, followed by the South at 30.6.
As far as individual states are concerned, Mississippi held onto its top ranking of states with the most weight problems, while Louisiana and West Virginia hold spots two and three. Rounding out the top ten are Tennessee, South Carolina, Arkansas, Kentucky, Alabama, Oklahoma, and North Dakota.
Hawaii ranked number 51 (the District of Columbia is included in the rankings) as the state with the least weight problems, according to a composite score calculated from the data.
Nevada took the top spot in the category of Highest % of Adults Who Are Overweight, with the DC ranking the best.
For Highest % of Adults Who Are Obese, Mississippi and West Virginia are tied for number one, with Colorado ranking 51st.
Mississippi again claims the top spot for Highest % of Residents Who Are Physically Inactive, and Colorado the least percentage of inactive residents.
Experts say that obesity is often the leading cause of preventable deaths, like heart disease, diabetes, strokes and some types of cancers. Additionally, medical costs are much higher for those who are obese as compared to people with healthy weight.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says there are many socioeconomic factors that play a part in the problem of obesity, citing low-income women are more likely to be obese than women with high incomes. And while education does not seem to play a part in the obesity factor for men, women with a college education are less likely to be obese than their counterparts with less education.
Lifestyle changes, including an exercise regimen and developing healthier eating habits, are recommended to combat obesity, stressing that diet alone does not usually accomplish the goal.
Experts say that only one of every five adults meet the guidelines of at least two-and-a-half hours of moderate activity per week, and add that children should get one hour of physical activity per day.