Minnesota's Obesity Rate Is Now Above 30%

More than 35 percent of Iowans are obese according to a new report

More than 35 percent of Iowans are obese according to a new report. Mike Mozart Flickr

"It's really about changing the conditions in people's lives so that they have the option to make that healthy choice".

Obesity is known as a risk factor for several chronic health conditions including type 2 diabetes, strokes, heart attack and even certain types of cancer.

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has more on obesity prevention.

For the first time, the annual report recorded adult obesity rates above 35% in nine states. The nine states are: Alabama, Arkansas, Iowa, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, Missouri, North Dakota and West Virginia.

We went from 24.3 percent in 2015 to 23.6 percent in 2016-a change good enough for us to claim the third-lowest obesity rate in the country this year, behind only Colorado and Washington, D.C.

The pace of obesity appears to be accelerating. That's significantly higher than the national rate of about 31 percent, according to the report.

New this year, the State of Obesity report also notes public policy and prevention measures taken by each state.

Nationwide, obesity has increased by 70% over the last 30 years for adults and by 85% for children.

Those at greatest risk for obesity include people with lower incomes and people of color.

Among adults, the latest data show that as of 2015-2016, about 47% of Hispanic and black Americans were obese, compared with about 38% of whites and almost 13% of Asians. White and Asian adults were 38% and 12.7% respectively.

Childhood obesity rates were highest among Hispanics (25.8%) and blacks (22%), compared with 14% of whites and 11% of Asians, the findings showed.

Increase the price of sugary drinks through excise taxes and use the revenue to address health and socioeconomic disparities.

Strengthen and expand school nutrition programs beyond federal standards to include universal meals, flexible breakfasts and eliminate all junk food marketing to students.

State officials say health care costs in Minnesota due to obesity were estimated to be $3.2 billion.

Cover pediatric weight management programs and services in Medicaid.

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