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Obesity Epidemic “Getting Worse” for Young Hispanic -Americans


A new report finds that nearly one in 10 Hispanic women and one in 20 Hispanic men ages 25 to 34 are severely obese. The study appeared in the most recent Journal of the American Heart Association and was sponsored by the National Heart, Lung and Blood Institute (NHLBI).

“This is a heavy burden being carried by young people who should be in the prime of life,” Lead Author and Professor of Epidemiology and Population Health at Albert Einstein College of Medicine in New York City Robert Kaplan, Ph.D., said. The obesity epidemic for Hispanics is “unprecedented and getting worse,” he said.

Researchers analyzed data from more than 16,415 men and women who self-identified as Hispanic or Latino from Bronx, New York, Chicago, Illinois, Miami, Florida and San Diego, California.

For Hispanics ages 18-24:

  • 27 percent of women and 30 percent of men were obese, of those 5 percent of women and 4 percent of men were severely obese; and
  • 25 percent of women and 28 percent of men were overweight.

For Hispanics ages 25-34:

  • 40 percent of women and 35 percent men were obese, of those 9 percent of women and 5 percent of men were severely obese; and
  • 33 percent of women and 41 percent of men were overweight.

“Because young adults with obesity are likely to be sicker as they age, and have higher healthcare costs, we should be investing heavily in obesity research and prevention, as if our nation’s future depended on it,” Kaplan said.

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