Obesity rates in the US and Maine appear to be leveling off, according to new data from U.S. Centers for Disease Control. But health experts say the numbers are still too high.
According to the CDC, about 40% of US adults have obesity. That compares to about 30% of adults in Maine, in a state by state report from the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation. The medical director of Maine’s childhood obesity prevention program Let’s Go, Dr. Tory Rogers, says the rate among Maine adolescents follows a similar trend. About 15% have obesity, compared to the national average of about 20%.
“Things are starting to stabilize, but we’re still in a pretty bad situation here. We still have too many people who have obesity,” she says.
Rogers says obesity costs Maine about $2.6 billion a year between medical issues, disability, and lost productivity.
Increasing physical activity goes a long way toward improving health, says Rogers. To improve diet, she suggests to start by reducing sugar consumption.