We grew up in Tennessee and Georgia, where traditional southern spreads are the norm (in the middle of the week) and being “healthy” has two different meanings. When discussing obesity in the United States, these states are always at the top of the list. But the times are a changing and contrary to popular belief, obesity isn’t just a problem for the South. Obesity has become a nationwide epidemic. Cultural norms typically associated with the “Stroke Belt,” have spawned some very scary, but real statistics.
- 23.8 percent of black girls ages 12-19 are over weight, compared to 14.6 percent of white girls the same age.
- 51.6 percent of black women ages 20-74 are considered obese compared to 31.5 percent of white women.
- About one-third of U.S. adults (33.8 percent) are obese.
- Approximately 17 percent (or 12.5 million) of American children and adolescents aged 2-19 years are obese.