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JAMA reports no change in U. S. obesity rates

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A new survey conducted by Dr. Cynthia L. Ogden and colleagues from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Hyattsville, Maryland found that childhood and adult obesity rates in the United States have shown no significant changes from 2003 to 2012 according to the researchers report in the Feb. 26, 2014, 26 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Society (JAMA).

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The researchers based their report on the measurement of the weight and body mass index of 9,120 people in the nationally representative National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) in 2012.

Children less than two years old had an obesity rate of 8.1 percent. Children and adolescents between the age of two and 19 had an obesity rate of 16.9 percent and 31.8 percent were considered overweight. More than 68 percent of adults were considered overweight. Obesity rates in adults were 34.9 percent.

The researchers note that there has been a six percent decease in the rate of obesity in children between the ages of two and five years of age between 2003 and 2012.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimated that obesity and obesity related disease costs the United States $147 billion annually in 2009.

Federal, state, and local governments have spent billions of dollars attempting to persuade people to lose weight, exercise, and eat a more healthy diet. The new research indicates that all that money has been wasted.

One might consider giving up the obesity fight and allowing those who opt to be overweight or obese to pay more for their health expenses.

Physicians, pharmaceutical companies, diet nostrum manufacturers, gyms, spas, food producers, and a host of industries that feed on the obesity epidemic probably do not want obesity to end because their income would decrease.

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