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Missouri's obesity rate bucks pandemic trend, still high

A report showed that 16 states now have an obesity rate of 35% or higher
Credit: Rostislav Sedlacek - stock.adobe

ST. LOUIS — Missouri's obesity rate decreased during 2020, though not by much.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and a report from America's Health Rankings, Missouri's obesity rate among adults, those with a body mass index of 30.0 or higher, fell from 34.8% in 2019 to 34% in 2020.

While the decrease was minor, it bucked the trends of many states, according to the report.

In Illinois, the rate rose from 31.6% in 2019 to 32.4% in 2020. In fact, the report showed that 16 states now have an obesity rate of 35% or higher, an increase of four states from the same report a year ago. According to a report from NPR, in 2011, not a single state had reached the threshold of 35% obesity. Now, among the 16 at that level, several are close to 40%. In addition, obesity rates are higher in the South and Midwest.

The pandemic didn't help people improve their health, with an increase in stress, job loss and a sedentary lifestyle contributing to the increase in obesity.

Click here for the full story from the St. Louis Business Journal.

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