If you thought that Americans were overweight now, by 2030, researchers believe that half of American men and women will be obese. The results of the study was carried out by Y. Claire Wang of Columbia University and Oxford University who made a prediction though mathematical models based on the body mass index data from the U.S. National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey studies from 1988 to 2008.
Through the mathematical data, Dr. Wang found that by 2030, 50% of American men will be obese, compared to 32% that were obese in 2007-2008. Based on the study, 52% of American women will be obese, compared to 35% in 2007-2008.
If the calculation is correct, an additional 65 million more adults will become obese in less than two decades. Obesity rates aren’t just prevalent in the United States, however, as the study forecasts that an additional 11 million people in the United Kingdom will also become obese.
The study also finds that with the rising obesity rates, 7.8 million extra cases cases of diabetes and 6.8 million more cases of coronary heart disease will come as a results. Increased cancer and stroke rates are also expected to increase. Additionally, the cost of obesity-related health care will rise 28% from $48 billion to $66 billion.
“Taking no action would have the catastrophic consequences described in our study, but a population level decrease in BMI by 1% would avoid as many as 2.4 million cases of diabetes, 1.7 million cases of heart disease and stroke, and up to 127,000 cases of cancer in the U.S. alone ,” Dr. Wang said about the study.
Dr. Wang and her colleagues suggest that making healthier foods cheaper can help reduce the rate from climbing to troubling numbers. They also suggested that the government should step in and make less-healthful foods more expensive through tax strategies and change the way food is marketed.