In a mind-boggling global study published today in The Lancet, a review of over 19 million people worldwide found that there's a serious obesity epidemic, to the point that researchers estimate one in five people will be obese by 2025. And while 2025 may sound like it's far away, it's not, guys: It's less than ten years. (Think about that for a second.)
Data was collected for the study for over four decades, making it one of the largest-scale studies both in size and length. What they found—by comparing body mass indexes (BMI) across time and the globe—was that the amount of obese people had risen staggeringly so, from 105 million in 1975 to 641 million in 2014. The mean BMI for women in 1975 was approximately 22, a healthy number, while it rose to around 24 in 2015, which is right near the high end of "normal." A BMI of 18.5 to 25 is considered normal; 25 to 29 is overweight; anything above that is obese. So the mere idea that our BMIs could raise so much more in the next nine years should certainly sound off alarm bells in your head and cause you to reflect on your own healthy lifestyle (or, pehaps, lack thereof). (This New Pee Test Can Predict Your Risk for Obesity.)
Because the country who turned out to have the biggest obesity problem was none other than the good old U.S.A. (Apparently, Most U.S. Adults Would Fail a Healthy Lifestyle Test.) The research published in The Lancet found that more than one in four severely obese men and one in five severely obese women currently live in America, and by 2025, 43 percent of women and 45 percent of men in the United States will be obese. Scariest of all, though, is that the U.S. actually has a zero percent chance of not having 20 percent of its population obese by 2025, according to the study. Yikes.
So if you're looking to lose a little bit of weight, try our 30-Day Slim Down Challenge! And perhaps more importantly, pass the message along to your friends and family. Obesity is the second leading cause of preventable death in the United States, after all.