Obesity Prevention

It is estimated that investing $10 per person, per year, in proven community-based programs aimed at increasing physical activity, improving nutrition, and preventing smoking and other tobacco use, could save the country more than $16 billion annually within 5 years - a return of $5.60 for every $1 invested.

Obesity Rates in Rensselaer County & the United States

  • Approximately two-thirds of U.S. adults and one-fifth of U.S. children are obese
  • The percentage of children with obesity has more than tripled since 1970
  • Percentage of obese adults in New York State more than doubled from 10% in 1977 to 25% in 2015
  • Among high school students from Upstate New York 24% are overweight or are at risk of becoming overweight
  • Rensselaer County’s percentage for weight status Body Mass Index (BMI) greater than 25, of adults 20 years and older is 59.1%
  • According to the 2009 Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System 26.7% of adults in Rensselaer County are obese

NY State Obesity and Activity Comparison Chart

NY State Adult Obesity Comparison Chart

Percentage of New York State middle and high school students (excluding New York City) who were overweight or obese, 2005 versus 2012 to 2014 (SWSCR):

NY State Middle and High School Students Obesity Comparison Chart

Obesity & Chronic Disease

  • Obesity is linked to many chronic diseases including:
    • Arthritis
    • Asthma
    • Cancer
    • Diabetes
    • Heart disease
    • Mental health problems
    • Sleep apnea
    • Stroke
  • Excessive weight gain of 11 to 18 pounds can double the risk for type 2 diabetes
  • Excessive weight gain of 10 to 20 pounds increases the risk of coronary heart disease by 25% in women, and 60% in men

The Economics of Obesity

In New York State, obesity costs almost $9 billion annually in direct expenditures for treatment of obesity-related disease, as well as indirect costs such as lost productivity.

Measuring Overweight & Obesity: BMI For Adults

Costs are expressed in 2013 dollars. Cost estimates are calculated by applying published estimates of per-person direct medical costs of overweight and obesity to the number of overweight and obese people in each county reported in the Expanded Behavioral Risk Factor Surveillance System (EBRFSS) dataset; see the "Methodology" section for more information.

Sources: New York State Department of Health EBRFSS 2013 to 2014