FIGURE 2-7 Prevalence of overweight and obesity among adults 20 years of age and older, NHANES 1999-2000.

SOURCE: CDC, 2003. Reprinted with permission from Salinsky and Scott, 2003. Copyright by the National Health Policy Forum.

percent to 30.5 percent) among 60 million U.S. adults. Between 1999-2000 and 2001-2002 there were no significant changes in the prevalence of obesity in adults (30.5 percent versus 30.6 percent) (Hedley et al., 2004). These trends, underscored by similar findings at the state level (Mokdad et al., 2001), have paralleled childhood and youth obesity prevalence, suggesting that the epidemics may be linked.

The observation that children and adults are both experiencing epidemics of obesity over the same time frame has important implications for understanding causes and formulating prevention interventions. Many of the same sociocultural factors that have contributed to the adult obesity epidemic have likely contributed to the childhood obesity epidemic.

The average parents today are twice as likely to be obese as 30 years

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