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The South Rises Again — In Obesity

6 September 2012 in Trading Ideas

Looking for this country’s obese citizenry?

Turn your attention to Mississippi, the Magnolia State, which has given us William Faulkner, Archie Manning, B.B. King – and apparently a whole lot of bad eating.

A recent report by the Trust for America’s Health and the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation finds that Mississippi is this country’s “fattest” state – meaning it has the highest share of obese citizens of any US state.

For Mississippi, that level is 34.9%, according to figures that the report used from the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Obesity is measured by using the body mass index (BMI), which is calculated by using a person’s height and weight. People with BMIs of 30 or more are considered obese.

But why pick on Mississippi when every state that it touches is close behind? Yes, we’re talking about you Alabama, Tennessee, Arkansas and Louisiana.

Officially, the fattest five states are Mississippi, Louisiana, West Virginia, Alabama and Michigan. Twenty-six of the 30 states with the heaviest obesity rates are in the South or the Midwest, according to the report.   

The least obese? Try Colorado, Hawaii, Massachusetts and New Jersey and the District of Columbia.

Tags: obesity