The U.S. Center for Disease Control and Prevention has released data from its latest survey tracking obesity statistics with participants self-reporting their body weight. It has curated this information into a color-coded map, which i09 calls a "fat map."
Overall, more than a third of adults are obese but rates vary by state. The latest figures are based on a 2011 telephone survey that asked adults their height and weight. For the first time, households with only cell phones were included.
Here's some of the regional distribution according to the report.
- By state, obesity prevalence ranged from 20.7% in Colorado to 34.9% in Mississippi in 2011. No state had a prevalence of obesity less than 20%. 39 states had a prevalence of 25% or more; 12 of these states had a prevalence of 30% or more: Alabama, Arkansas, Indiana, Kentucky, Louisiana, Michigan, Mississippi, Missouri, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Texas, and West Virginia.
- The South had the highest prevalence of obesity (29.5%), followed by the Midwest (29.0%), the Northeast (25.3%) and the West (24.3%).
These newer figures, according to the report, establish a new baseline for obesity rates as there were changes to the exclusion criteria. For this reason, the statistics cannot be compared to obesity data from previous years.
The CDC still includes obesity data over the last few decades for "historical information only" on its website. It even has an animated map to show the changes in obesity statistics from 1985 through 2010. Below are screenshots from a few of the years showing the changes in the country's body mass index.
The Associated Press contributed to this report.