Study: Fewer U.S. Adults Attempting Weight Loss | Athletic Business

Study: Fewer U.S. Adults Attempting Weight Loss

A new analysis of National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey results shows that fewer Americans are making an effort to lose weight, despite a continued rise in the percentage of overweight and obese adults in the United States.

Researchers analyzed the self-reported data of 27,000 U.S. adults between the ages of 20 and 59 and found that the percentage of adults who could be classified as overweight or obese based on their body mass index rose from 53 percent in 1988 to 66 percent in 2014.

Over the 26-year period, the percentage of overweight or obese adults who reported an attempt to lose weight in the past year declined from 56 percent to 49 percent. Researchers found the data to be consistent for both men and women across the Hispanic, white and black ethnic communities.

According to Dr. Jian Zhang, associate professor of epidemiology at Georgia Southern University in Statesboro and the study’s lead author, the decline in overweight or obese individuals who are attempting to lose weight is likely linked to more widespread social acceptance of larger body types.

 Zhang told Live Science, the best way to combat rising obesity statistics is not in promoting weight loss culture but rather in prevention. According to Zhang, more attention should be focused on encouraging an active and healthy lifestyle for children, both at school and at home.

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