WASHINGTON (UPI) — By 2030, 67 percent of Mississippi is slated to be obese, while the District of Columbia is estimated to be 32.6 percent obese, researchers say.
A report by the Trust for America’s Health and Robert Wood Johnson Foundation included an analysis that forecast if obesity rates continue on their current trajectories, by 2030, 13 states could have adult obesity rates above 60 percent, 39 states could have rates above 50 percent, and all 50 states could have rates above 44 percent.
By contrast, the analysis also shows states could prevent obesity-related diseases and dramatically reduce healthcare costs if they reduced the average body mass index of their residents by just 5 percent by 2030.
The researchers calculated projections using a model published in The Lancet and data from the Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System, an annual phone survey conducted by federal and state health officials.
“This study shows us two futures for America’s health,” Dr. Risa Lavizzo-Mourey, president and chief executive officer of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, said in a statement.
By 2030, U.S. healthcare costs associated with treating preventable obesity-related diseases are estimated to increase by $48 billion to $66 billion per year and the loss in economic productivity could be between $390 billion and $580 billion annually, Lavizzo-Mourey said.
Although the medical cost of U.S. adult obesity is difficult to calculate, current estimates range from $147 billion to nearly $210 billion per year, the report said.
Following Mississippi as the fattest state are Oklahoma, Delaware, Tennessee, South Carolina, Alabama, Kansas, Louisiana, Missouri and Arkansas.