WASHINGTON (UPI) — Nearly seven in 10 adults in West Virginia, Mississippi and Kentucky are overweight or obese, a Gallup Poll indicates.
At the other end of the scale was Colorado, the least overweight state in the union — but even there, 55.1 percent of residents were overweight or obese, the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index found.
The surveys of 177,663 U.S. adults were conducted from January through June.
An average of 62.8 percent of all U.S. adults were overweight or obese in the first half of 2012 — 36.3 percent were overweight and 26.2 percent were obese — on par with 2011, the survey found.
Residents of Southern and Midwestern states were the most likely in the country to be overweight or obese — nine of the 10 states with the highest overweight/obesity rates in the nation were in the South and Midwest.
The majority of the adult population in every U.S. state could be classified as overweight or obese, based on Americans’ self-reported height and weight, Gallup officials said.
Millions are at high risk for developing — if they haven’t already — costly and deadly chronic illnesses such as diabetes and high blood pressure, Gallup said.
The margin of error was 0.3 percentage points overall, with a margin of error for most states at 1 percentage point to 2 percentage points. Smaller states such as Wyoming, North Dakota, South Dakota, Delaware and Hawaii had a margin of error of 4 percentage points.