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US obese population at 72mn

Latest figures have revealed that more than 72 millions of the US adults suffer from obesity which has turned the condition in to a major public health threat.

The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) said in a report that about 26.7 percent of the Americans are obese, adding that the rate of the condition has increased by 1.1 percentage point in the past two years.

Blacks and Hispanics constitute the highest number of the US obese population, noted the report published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine. None of the states met the CDC’s 2010 national goal of limiting obesity to 15 percent.

While the prevalence of obesity was lower than 30 percent in 2000, nine US states had an obesity rate higher than 30 percent based on the latest figures. The majority of the US obese live in Mississippi, whereas Colorado has the fewest percentage of obese residents.

“We need intensive, comprehensive and ongoing efforts to address obesity,” said CDC director Thomas Frieden, stressing that obesity-related conditions such as heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes and certain types of cancer are becoming the leading cause of death in the world.

Obesity also imposes a heavy burden on the society as the annual medical costs of obesity are reported to be $1,429 more than that of normal-weighted individuals.

“We need to change our communities into places where healthy eating and active living are the easiest path,” said William Dietz from CDC, stressing that, “Obesity is a complex problem that requires both personal and community action.”

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