Obesity in Indiana


Indiana Adults 9th Most Obese in Country; Youth 15th Most Overweight

Washington, D.C. (Aug. 27, 2007) – Indiana has the 9th highest rate of adult obesity at 26.8 percent and the 15th highest rate of overweight youths (ages 10-17) at 15.6 percent in the nation, according to a new report by Trust for America’s Health (TFAH).

The fourth annual “F as in Fat: How Obesity Policies Are Failing in America,” 2007 report found that adult obesity rates rose in 31 states in the U.S. over the past year, and adult obesity rates now exceed 25 percent in 19 states. The rate of adult obesity remained consistent in Indiana since last year. No state experienced a decrease. Eight-five percent of Americans believe obesity is an epidemic, according to a public opinion survey also featured in the report.

Impact of obesity:
·         According to the Surgeon General’s “Call to Action to Prevent and Decrease Overweight and Obesity” report, the estimated cost of obesity in the United States was $117 billion in 2000. This estimate includes the direct costs associated with obesity and its related co-morbidities, such as preventative, diagnostic and treatment services, as well as indirect costs including the value of income lost from decreased productivity or lost days of work.[i]

·         Obesity is considered the second leading cause of preventable death in the United States.[ii]

·         Obesity appears to have a stronger association than smoking or problem drinking with chronic medical conditions, reduced health-related quality of life and increased health care and medication spending.[iii]

·         People who are significantly overweight or obese often face serious health consequences including increased risk for premature death, risk for other serious health issues, such as Type 2 diabetes, heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure and sleep apnea. [iv] , [v]

·         According to a study published in Personnel Psychology, obese people are subject to job discrimination and frequently stereotyped as emotionally impaired, socially handicapped or possessing negative personality traits.[vi]


[i]  U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.  The Surgeon General’s Call To Action To Prevent and Decrease Overweight and Obesity in 2001. http://www.cdc.gov/nccdphp/dnpa/pdf/CalltoAction.pdf

[ii] American Obesity Association. AOA Fact Sheets.  Available at http://www.obesity.org/subs/fastfacts/obesity_US.shtml

[iii] Sturm R.  The effects of obesity, smoking and problem drinking on chronic medical problems and health care costs.  Health Affairs.  2002:21(2):245-253

[iv] American Obesity Association. AOA Fact Sheets. Health effects of obesity. Available at http://www.obesity.org/subs/fastfacts/Health_Effects.shtml

[v] Ahroni JH, Montgomery KF, Watkins BM. Laparoscopic Adjustable Gastric Banding: Weight Loss, Co-morbidities, Medication Usage and Quality of Life at One Year,” Obesity Surgery 2005; 15:641-647.

[vi] Roehling M.  Weight-based discrimination in employment: psychological and legal aspects. Personnel Psychology 1999:52(4):: 969-1016.

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