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Report: Heaviest State Is Mississippi; Leanest Is Colorado

Aug. 23, 2005 -- The numbers on America's scales are getting bigger and bigger, with obesity rates up in virtually every state.

Here's a quick look at a new report on obesity from the Trust for America's Health. The numbers come from 2004.

  • Percentage of American adults who are obese: 24.5%
  • Percentage of Americans adults who are obese or overweight: 64.5%
  • State with the biggest percentage of obese adults: Mississippi (28%)
  • State with the smallest percentage of obese adults: Colorado (16%)

In 2003, the percentage of obese American adults was 23.7%. That's a lot of people, but fewer than the 2004 figure.

The report is titled, "F as in Fat: How Obesity Policies are Failing in America, 2005." The numbers came from the CDC's Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance Survey.

Heaviest States

Oregon was the only state without a rising obesity rate in 2004. But figures weren't available for Hawaii.

From 2002-2004, more than a quarter of adults in 10 states were obese. Those states are:

  • Mississippi
  • Alabama
  • West Virginia
  • Louisiana
  • Tennessee
  • Texas
  • Michigan
  • Kentucky
  • Indiana
  • South Carolina

The rest of the country doesn't have much room to gloat. Other findings in the report:

  • More than half of adults (52%) are either obese or overweight in every state.
  • At least 1 in 5 adults is obese in 43 states plus Washington, D.C.

Full List of States

Here's how the states ranked for their reported percentage of obese adults in 2004:

  • Mississippi: 29.5%
  • Alabama: 28.9%
  • West Virginia: 27.6%
  • Tennessee: 27.2%
  • Louisiana: 27%
  • Arkansas: 26.1%
  • Kentucky: 25.8%
  • Texas: 25.8%
  • Indiana: 25.5%
  • Michigan: 25.4%
  • Ohio: 25.3%
  • South Carolina: 25.1%
  • Missouri: 24.9%
  • Oklahoma: 24.9%
  • Georgia: 24.7%
  • North Dakota: 24.6%
  • Pennsylvania: 24.3%
  • North Carolina: 24.2%
  • Maryland: 23.9%
  • South Dakota: 23.8%
  • Alaska: 23.7%
  • Iowa: 23.5%
  • Maine: 23.4%
  • Kansas: 23.2%
  • Nebraska: 23.2%
  • Wisconsin: 23.2%
  • Virginia: 23.1%
  • Illinois: 23%
  • Florida: 22.9%
  • Minnesota: 22.6%
  • Washington, D.C.: 22.5%
  • California: 22.2%
  • Washington: 22.2%
  • New York: 22.1%
  • New Jersey: 21.9%
  • New Hampshire: 21.6%
  • New Mexico: 21.5%
  • Arizona: 21.2%
  • Oregon: 21.2%
  • Delaware: 21.1%
  • Nevada: 21.1%
  • Idaho: 20.8%
  • Wyoming: 20.8%
  • Utah: 20.4%
  • Massachusetts: 18.4%
  • Connecticut: 19.7%
  • Montana: 19.7%
  • Rhode Island: 19%
  • Vermont: 18.7%
  • Colorado: 16.8%

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