The costs of obesity and implications for policymakers
Before the 1970s, obesity prevalence—body mass index (BMI) of 30 or greater—was creeping upward at a relatively slow rate (Flegal, 1996). However, between 1976 and 2005, the prevalence of obesity increased dramatically (Ogden et al. 2007). According to the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES), obesity prevalence in 2007-2008 was 32.2% and 35.5% among adult males and females, respectively, representing more than a 100% increase from 1976-1980 and a 50% increase from 1988-1994 (Flegal et al. 2010).