By Steve StraehleyThe Wall Street JournalSeptember 19, 2018 8:39:02The number of Americans with a body mass index of 30 or higher has more than doubled in the past decade, and as many as 40 percent of those with those types of figures have gained weight, according to new research.
The researchers found that the rise is even more pronounced in the Northeast, a region where obesity rates are highest.
Obesity rates have more than tripled in the region, to an average of 16 percent of the population, compared with 8.5 percent in the nation overall.
The rise has been especially steep in New York, where the average person has an elevated BMI of 30.9.
New York City, which is considered the epicenter of obesity, is a popular destination for celebrities, with the number of people who have attended New York City’s Javits Center and other venues in the last two years exceeding the number who have visited Los Angeles or other major cities, according the researchers.
The researchers say they expect the obesity crisis to worsen as the economy recovers and as people seek alternative health services.
The report, which was released Thursday, follows two other recent reports showing that American obesity rates have reached record highs.
In May, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported that the number was up nearly 13 percent from a year earlier.
And in July, a report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine warned that the U.S. could have lost up to 40 million Americans by 2030, because of the economic strain the obesity epidemic has caused.