Data Suggests the Average American Is Borderline Obese

The numbers are in and things are looking up; unfortunately what’s up, these days, is the weight of the average American.  Indeed, the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show that the average American is heavier than at the beginning of the 21st century.  Not only are we getting heavier, though, but we are getting shorter, too, apparently.

The new CDC data says that the average American male is 5-feet, 9-inches tall with a weight of about 198 pounds.  The average American female is 5-feet, 4-inches tall with a weight of 171 pounds.  At the beginning of the century, height aside, the average male and female in America weighed 189.1 and 163.6 pounds, respectively.

Bringing it back to the present day, though, the average American male is considered overweight if he weighs more than 169 pounds; and he is considered obese if he weighs more than 202 pounds.  Similarly, the average American female is considered overweight if she weighs more than 140; and obese with a weight higher than 175 pounds.  To clarify, the data suggests the average non-Hispanic white American male weighs 202.2 pounds.

So if we put two and two together and we can assess that the average American male is borderline obese.

While height and weight are factors everyone can plainly observe, the most important metric to measure is Body Mass Index.  BMI is the measure of body fat based on height and weight and it is a better way to determine health in terms of things like obesity.  That in mind, the age-adjusted mean body mass index for men rose from 27.8 in the year 2000 to 29.1 in 2016; the age-adjusted mean body mass index for women rose from 28.2 to 29.6 in the same observation period.

Putting that into perspective, health officials say that a healthy body mass index is between 18.5 and 24.9; and the BMI obesity threshold is 30.

This data comes on the heels of a statement from the scientific research organization The Obesity Society who classified, this month, that obesity is a worldwide, non-communicable chronic disease.