This article was written with the assistance of A.I. technology, and has been edited and fact-checked by Colman Andrews.
West Virginia is the most obese state in America, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The CDC’s 2021 report on adult obesity rates found that 40.6% of West Virginians aged 20 and older suffer from obesity – defined as having a BMI, or body mass index, of 30 or above. This is the highest rate in the nation.
Obesity is a leading cause of preventable death in the United States, linked to type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and some cancers. It is also a major risk factor for COVID-19 mortality.
West Virginia’s obesity epidemic is likely due to a number of factors:
It has a high percentage of adults who don’t exercise, with only 21.4% of the state’s adults meeting the CDC’s recommendation that adults get at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity each week.
Some 42.5% of West Virginians 18 and older report that they get less than seven hours of sleep every night, and getting enough sleep – usually defined as a minimum of seven to eight hours – is important for overall health.
And eating a healthy diet is another important way to prevent obesity – but in West Virginia, only 26.2% of adults report eating the recommended daily amount of fruits and vegetables.
Click here to see the most obese states in America.
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