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South Leads Nation in Obesity

Posted on Wednesday, June 25, 2008 at 12:37PM by Registered CommenterPennino Corp. CEO | CommentsPost a Comment | References206 References

CDC survey: South leads nation in obesity

  • Story Highlights
  • More than 30 percent of adults in Mississippi, Alabama, Tennessee are obese
  • Colorado's ranked lowest, with 19 percent
  • Results based on answers in telephone survey of 350,000 adults

ATLANTA, Georgia (AP) -- The South tips the scales again as the nation's fattest region, according to a new government survey.

More than 30 percent of adults in each of the states tipped the scales enough to ensure that the South remains the nation's fattest region.

Colorado was the least obese, with about 19 percent fitting that category in a random telephone survey last year by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

The 2007 findings are similar to results from the same survey the three previous years. Mississippi has had the highest obesity rate every year since 2004. But Alabama, Tennessee, West Virginia and Louisiana have also clustered near the top of the list, often so close that the difference between their rates and Mississippi's may not be statistically significant.

Why is the South so heavy? The traditional Southern diet -- high in fat and fried food -- may be part of the answer, said Dr. William Dietz, who heads CDC's nutrition, physical activity and obesity division. iReport.com: How can we fight obesity?

The South also has a large concentration of rural residents and black women -- two groups that tend to have higher obesity rates, he said.

Colorado, meanwhile, is a state with a reputation for exercise. It has plentiful biking and hiking trails, and an elevation that causes the body to labor a bit more, Dietz said.

Obesity is based on the body mass index, a calculation using height and weight. A 5-foot, 9-inch adult who weighs 203 pounds would have a BMI of 30, which is considered the threshold for obesity.

Read the rest of the article:

http://www.cnn.com/2008/HEALTH/diet.fitness/07/17/obesity.states.ap/index.html

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