CDC: Half of US Adults Tried to Lose Weight From 2013 to 2016

A woman standing on a scale
A woman standing on a scale
Exercising and eating less were top weight loss methods, and more women than men attempted weight loss.

HealthDay News — Nearly half of U.S. adults have tried to lose weight from 2013 to 2016, according to a July data brief published by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics.

Crescent B. Martin, M.P.H., from the National Center for Health Statistics in Hyattsville, Md., and colleagues used data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (2013 to 2016) to examine the percentage of U.S. adults who tried to lose weight in the past 12 months by sex, age, race and Hispanic origin, family income, and weight status.

The researchers found that from 2013 to 2016, just 49.1 percent of U.S. adults attempted to lose weight in the past 12 months. 

More women than men attempted to lose weight (56.4 percent versus 41.7 percent). An increased percentage of attempted weight loss was seen among individuals with higher family income and those with higher weight status. A lower percentage of non-Hispanic Asian adults (41.4 percent) tried to lose weight than non-Hispanic white, non-Hispanic black, and Hispanic adults (49.4, 48, and 49.1 percent, respectively). Exercising (62.9 percent) and eating less food (62.9 percent) were the top two weight loss methods, with the majority of adults trying to lose weight reporting using two or more methods.

“A higher percentage of younger adults aged 20 to 39 and middle-aged adults aged 40 to 59 tried to lose weight, compared with older adults aged 60 and older,” the authors write.

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