Obesity overtaking smoking as America's number one killer
According to the CDC (Centers for Disease Control and Prevention) smoking in 2000 was the biggest cause of death - 435,000 people died. 18.1% of everyone who died in that year died of a smoking related disease.
Obesity (bad diet and no exercise) was the cause of 400,000 deaths.
129.6 Americans are overweight or obese. That is a staggering 64% of the population.
If obesity continues to rise, by the year 2020, 20% of all health care spending will be on obesity related diseases and conditions. This is according to the Rand Corporation.
The American Health and Human Services Secretary, Tommy Thompson said 'Americans need to understand that overweight and obesity are literally killing us. To know that poor eating habits and inactivity are on the verge of surpassing tobacco use as the leading cause of preventable death in America should motivate all Americans to take action to protect their health. We need to tackle America's weight issues as aggressively as we are addressing smoking and tobacco.'
You are obese when your BMI (Body Mass Index) is more than 30. One in three Americans is obese, says the CDC.
When your BMI goes over 30, your risk of heart disease, strokes and diabetes increases dramatically.
There are no references listed for this article.
Please use one of the following formats to cite this article in your essay, paper or report:
n.p. "Obesity overtaking smoking as America's number one killer." Medical News Today. MediLexicon, Intl., 9 Mar. 2004. Web.
4 Dec. 2016. <http://www.medicalnewstoday.com/releases/6438.php>
n.p. (2004, March 9). "Obesity overtaking smoking as America's number one killer." Medical News Today. Retrieved from
Please note: If no author information is provided, the source is cited instead.
Contact our news editors
For any corrections of factual information, or to contact our editorial team, please see our contact page.
Copyright Medical News Today: Excluding email/sharing services explicitly offered on this website, material published on Medical News Today may not be reproduced, or distributed without the prior written permission of Medilexicon International Ltd. Please contact us for further details.