Prevalence of Obesity Remains Steady in the US

(HealthDay News) — The prevalence of obesity among youth or adults in the United States did not change significantly between 2003–2004 and 2011–2012, according to research published in the February 26 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

Cynthia L. Ogden, PhD, of the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention in Hyattsville, Md., and colleagues analyzed data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey to identify trends in childhood and adult obesity.

The researchers found that, for 2011–2012, 8.1% of infants and toddlers had high weight for recumbent length; 16.9% of those aged 2–19 years and 34.9% of those aged ≥20 years were obese. High weight for recumbent length in infants and toddlers, and obesity in youth or adults, did not change significantly from 2003–2004 to 2011–2012. Significant changes included a decrease in obesity from 13.9 to 8.4% among children aged 2–5 years, and an increase in obesity from 31.5 to 38.1% among women ≥60 years of age. 

Obesity prevalence remains high and thus it is important to continue surveillance,” the authors write.

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